Associate Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg poses with other Justices of the United States Supreme Court during their official group photo at the Supreme Court on Nov. 30, 2018 in Washington. (Jabin Botsford/Washington Post)

Associate Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg poses with other Justices of the United States Supreme Court during their official group photo at the Supreme Court on Nov. 30, 2018 in Washington. (Jabin Botsford/Washington Post)

Ginsburg missing U.S. Supreme Court arguments for 1st time

Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg is recovering from cancer surgery

Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg is missing arguments for the first time in more than 25 years as she recuperates from cancer surgery last month, the U.S. Supreme Court said.

Ginsburg was not on the bench as the court met Monday to hear arguments. It was not clear when she would return to the court, which will hear more cases on Tuesday and Wednesday, and again next week.

Court spokeswoman Kathy Arberg said the 85-year-old justice is continuing to recuperate and work from home after doctors removed two cancerous growths from her left lung on Dec. 21.

Ginsburg was discharged from a New York hospital on Dec. 25.

Chief Justice John Roberts said in the courtroom Monday that Ginsburg would participate in deciding the argued cases “on the basis of the briefs and transcripts of oral arguments.”

Ginsburg had two earlier cancer surgeries in 1999 and 2009 that did not cause her to miss court sessions. She also has broken ribs on at least two occasions.

READ MORE: Trump, Democrats ramp up pressure as U.S. shutdown hits 3rd week

The court said doctors found the growths on Ginsburg’s lung when she was being treated for fractured ribs she suffered in a fall at her office on Nov. 7.

After past health scares, Ginsburg has come back to work relatively quickly. In 2009, she was at the court for arguments on Feb. 23, 18 days after surgery for pancreatic cancer.

Weeks after her fall in November, Ginsburg was asking questions at high court arguments, speaking at a naturalization ceremony for new citizens and being interviewed at screenings of the new movie about her, “On the Basis of Sex.”

Her latest surgery was a procedure called a pulmonary lobectomy at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York. The court said in a release issued the day of the surgery that doctors found “no evidence of any remaining disease” and scans taken before the surgery showed no cancerous growths elsewhere in her body. No additional treatment is currently planned, the court said.

Appointed by President Bill Clinton in 1993, Ginsburg rebuffed suggestions from some liberals that she should step down in the first two years of President Barack Obama’s second term, when Democrats controlled the Senate and would have been likely to confirm her successor.

She already has hired clerks for the term that extends into 2020, indicating she has no plans to retire.

If she did step down, President Donald Trump would have another opportunity to move a conservative court even more to the right. On the day she had surgery, Trump tweeted his wishes for Ginsburg’s “full and speedy recovery!”

Mark Sherman, The Associated Press


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Cathy Armstrong, executive director of the Land Conservancy, Paul Nursey CEO of Destination Greater Victoria and Saanich Coun. Susan Brice helped to kick off the annual Greater Victoria Flower Count at Abkhazi Garden Monday. This year, the flower count is less about rubbing the region’s weather in the rest of Canada’ faces, and more about extending a bouquet of compassion and love. (Nina Grossman/News Staff)
2021 Greater Victoria Flower Count sows seeds of compassion

Friendly flower count competition runs from March 3 to 10

The Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre has reopened with 45 shelter spots for people experiencing homelessness in Victoria. (Courtesy of Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre)
Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre shelter in Victoria reopens with spots for 45 people

Arena is an interim step until long-term housing is found

(Black Press Media file photo)
A disruptive rider was forced to leave a BC Transit bus on Monday morning. (Black Press Media File Photo)
Greater Victoria students lose bid for transit commission voting seat

Commission members took issue over students not being elected officials

Island Health chief medical officer Dr. Richard Stanwick receives a first dose of Pfizer vaccine, Dec. 22, 2020. (B.C. government)
COVID-19: B.C. seniors aged 80+ can start to sign up for vaccination on March 8

Long-term care residents protected by shots already given

Langley resident Carrie MacKay shared a video showing how stairs are a challenge after spending weeks in hospital battling COVID-19 (Special to Langley Advance Times)
VIDEO: Stairs a challenge for B.C. woman who chronicled COVID-19 battle

‘I can now walk for six (to) 10 minutes a day’

B.C. Attorney General David Eby speaks in the legislature, Dec. 7, 2020. Eby was given responsibility for housing after the October 2020 provincial election. (Hansard TV)
B.C. extends COVID-19 rent freeze again, to the end of 2021

‘Renoviction’ rules tightened, rent capped to inflation in 2022

Face mask hangs from a rear-view mirror. (Black Press image)
B.C. CDC unveils guide on how to carpool during the pandemic

Wearing masks, keeping windows open key to slowing the spread of COVID-19

Churches, including Langley’s Riverside Calvary Church, are challenging the regulations barring them from holding in-person worship services during COVID-19. (Langley Advance Times file)
Det. Sgt. Jim Callender. (Hamilton Police Service screenshot)
B.C. man dead, woman seriously injured after shooting in Hamilton, Ont.

The man was in the process of moving to the greater Toronto area, police say

Police have identified the vehicle involved in the Feb. 14 hit-and-run in Chemainus and are continuing to investigate. (Black Press Media files)
Police seize and identify suspect vehicle in hit-and-run

Investigation into death expected to be lengthy and involved

(Black Press file photo)
Child in critical condition, homicide investigators probe incident near Agassiz

The child was transported to hospital but is not expected to survive

Sewage plant in Lower Mainland, operated by Metro Vancouver. (Metro Vancouver screenshot)
‘Poop tracker’ launches as researchers test Lower Mainland sewage water for COVID-19

‘Studying the virus in wastewater allows researchers to look at an entire population…’

This poster, spreading misinformation regarding COVID-19 restrictions, has been popping up in communities across Vancouver Island.
UPDATED: Poster popping up in Island communities falsely claiming COVID restrictions are over

Unattributed poster claims COVID restrictions ended March 1; Island Health responds

Most Read