John Paul Stevens

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Justice John Paul Stevens: Time to Legalize Weed

It's not that different from booze, he says

(Newser) - In a development Gerald Ford probably didn't see coming when he appointed him to the Supreme Court back in 1975, Justice John Paul Stevens says it's time to legalize marijuana. The 94-year-old, who retired in 2010, compares alcohol to marijuana in an interview with NPR and says there'... More »

Justice Stevens on SCOTUS: 'I Didn't Do Well Enough'

Describes time on high court as 'terribly disappointing, gratifying'

(Newser) - John Paul Stevens has been piping up recently ahead of his new book, and he continues that trend today with an interview on ABC in which he describes his lengthy tenure on the United States Supreme Court thusly : "It’s really awfully hard because it's a series of... More »

Judge Stevens: 5 Words Can Fix 2nd Amendment

Retired Supreme Court justice proposes a remedy

(Newser) - Retired Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens argues in the Washington Post that the debate over the 2nd Amendment and the right to bear arms can be settled with the addition of five words. Here they are, inserted into the amendment in bold:
  • “A well regulated Militia, being necessary
... More »

Stevens: High Court Likely Rethinking Citizens United

Former Supreme Court justice says 'second thoughts' are likely

(Newser) - John Paul Stevens, who dissented on the controversial Citizens United ruling before retiring from the US Supreme Court in 2010, says the rest of the justices appear to be having "second thoughts about the breadth of the reasoning." Stevens made his comments at a University of Arkansas event... More »

Bob Dylan Gets Medal of Freedom

Madeleine Albright, John Glenn also among honorees

(Newser) - President Obama bestowed the Presidential Medal of Freedom on Bob Dylan, Madeleine Albright, and a host of other luminaries today at the White House. The Los Angeles Times notes that 1962 seemed to be a pivotal year for this year's honorees: It's when Dylan's first album came... More »

Bob Dylan to Get Presidential Medal of Freedom

Pat Summitt, Toni Morrison also among this year's honorees

(Newser) - Bob Dylan will get the nation's highest civilian honor later this spring, reports Bloomberg . Dylan, 70, will be one of 13 recipients of the Presidential Medal of Freedom. He's already got scores of Grammys, an Oscar, and a Pulitzer, and the Wall Street Journal's Speakeasy blog can'... More »

Justice Stevens Explains Shift on Death Penalty

Former supporter cites racism, politics, judicial activism

(Newser) - Former Supreme Court justice John Paul Stevens is making clear for the first time why he switched course on the death penalty in 2008, calling it unconstitutional, the New York Times reports. Writing in the New York Review of Books, Stevens, who supported capital punishment in 1976, reveals his revised... More »

Bowties Bid Stevens Adieu on Last Day

(Newser) - Bowtie-wearing lawyers and spectators dotted the Supreme Court chamber on the last day Justice John Paul Stevens sat on the bench, a nod to the retiring justice and his signature neckwear. The 90-year-old Stevens told colleagues in a letter he read from the bench that if he had "overstayed"... More »

Kagan Pick Reveals Savvy Obama Strategy

Prez manages to play it safe and progressive at the same time

(Newser) - President Obama's pick of Elena Kagan for the Supreme Court says more about the president than his nominee, writes Glenn Thrush. The president spoke boldly about the need to stand up to big business in his pre-selection talk while privately seeking a safe pick who could be confirmed without much... More »

Kagan Choice for Court: How It Will Play Out

She'll have critics on both right and left, but will skirt major battles

(Newser) - The Senate confirmation hearings for Elena Kagan will likely include some minor dust-ups but no major battles, observers say. Liberals are worried she's more conservative than Stevens and will thus push the court to the right, but are unlikely to seriously oppose her. Conservatives respect her overall, though her move... More »

Obama Will Nominate Elena Kagan to Supreme Court

President Obama plans to nominate solicitor general for high court seat

(Newser) - President Obama plans to nominate Elena Kagan to the Supreme Court to replace John Paul Stevens tomorrow, MSNBC reports and numerous other sources comfirm. Should Kagan, 50, be confirmed, the high court would have three female justices for the first time. Her nomination marks the first time in 38 years... More »

Obama Interviews First Court Candidate

Under-the-radar pick Sidney Thomas gets Oval Office meeting

(Newser) - President Obama has accelerated his search for his next Supreme Court nominee, meeting in the Oval Office with one of the candidates, federal judge Sidney Thomas of Montana, a person familiar with the conversation says. Obama's meeting with Thomas yesterday was his first known formal interview for the upcoming vacancy... More »

Democrats to Play Offense in Court Fight

Will attack 'conservative judicial activism,' citing Citizens United ruling

(Newser) - “Judicial activism” isn’t just a conservative buzzword anymore. Democrats intend to use the upcoming confirmation battle over John Paul Stevens’ successor to argue that it’s the conservatives on John Roberts’ court who are litigating from the bench, high-ranking Democrats tell Politico . Exhibit A: The wildly unpopular Citizens... More »

White House: Clinton Staying Put

Refutes Hatch suggestion she's being considered for Supreme Court

(Newser) - Orrin Hatch is a nice guy and all, but his speculation this morning that Hillary Clinton might fill the Supreme Court seat of John Paul Stevens is bunk—or so says the White House, according to Politico . "The president thinks Secretary Clinton is doing an excellent job as Secretary... More »

Hillary Clinton's Name Floated for Court Slot: Sen. Hatch

Sen. Orrin Hatch says he's heard her name floated

(Newser) - Sen. Orrin Hatch says he's heard Hillary Clinton's name mentioned in connection with the Supreme Court vacancy brought about by the retirement of John Paul Stevens. Appearing with Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy on NBC's Today show, the Utah Republican said only, "I heard Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton's... More »

After Stevens: What's Next?

Expect a fierce battle for liberal justice's replacement

(Newser) - What will John Paul Stevens’ retirement mean for the Supreme Court? Here are three early thoughts on what comes next:
  • Expect the tea partiers to get extremely riled up over whoever President Obama nominates, writes Chris Good of the Atlantic . They have a “very strict (one could almost say
... More »

Justice John Paul Stevens Will Retire

Obama has another Supreme Court vacancy to fill

(Newser) - US Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens, the court's oldest member and leader of its liberal bloc, says he is retiring. President Obama now has his second high court opening to fill. Stevens said today that he will step down when the court finishes its work for the summer in... More »

Obama Eyes Elena Kagan, 2 Others for Supreme Court

President will move fast once Stevens steps down

(Newser) - Justice John Paul Stevens still hasn't decided exactly how soon he'll retire from the Supreme Court, but President Obama already has his eye on three potential replacements: Solicitor General Elena Kagan and federal appellate judges Diane Wood and Merrick Garland. The White House is preparing to move quickly with a... More »

A First for Stevens: Feeling Tired on the Bench

Says he's close to making a retirement decision

(Newser) - John Paul Stevens still hasn't decided whether he's going to retire from the Supreme Court, but he admits a "novel experience" to the New York Times —feeling tired on the bench. It came during the huge decision on corporate political donations in January, when Stevens, who turns 90... More »

Post-Stevens Supreme Court Comes Into Sharper Focus

Departure of senior liberal justice will shift the balance of power

(Newser) - John Paul Stevens will probably retire from the Supreme Court this summer, leaving an opening for President Obama to fill. In the broadest sense, Obama's pick will change little: The president will probably choose a justice who will side with the court's liberals. But the new face will not be... More »

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