First woman of the Supreme Court US Former Justice Sandra Day OConnor dies aged 93 who set the standard as one of the very first women to be a judge in the Supreme Court, has died in court, the court announced early on Friday.
O’Connor who was 93 passed away due to “complications related to advanced dementia,” the court noted.
O’Connor was a role model for the next generation of women lawyers, including five women who were appointed following her appointment to the supreme court. They admired her career path, which marked the way for women in a field that was traditionally dominated by males. As time passed, she became popular for being a conservative moderate, and often was the most popular choice on social issues.
She died in the wake of living to witness a new conservative-leaning court uphold the decision on abortion she wrote in 1992. The court also reduced the distinction between the state and the church and focus its attention on an area of particular interest for her: affirmative action.
Chief Justice John Roberts described O’Connor as an “patriot” and a “fiercely independent defender of the rule of law, and an eloquent advocate for civics education.”
In the year 2018, O’Connor disclosed in an open letter that she was diagnosed with the early stages of dementia. It was most likely Alzheimer’s disease.
“While the final chapter of my life with dementia may be trying, nothing has diminished my gratitude and deep appreciation for the countless blessings of my life,” she wrote.
When she was nominated for an advisory bench position in the year 1981 In 1981, the president Ronald Reagan called her”truly an individual for every season, with the unique characteristics of fairness, temperament as well as a high level of intellectual ability and a commitment to public good that characterize the 101 brothers who preceding her.”
Growing in the Lazy B Ranch in Arizona, O’Connor was known for her independence and self-reliance qualities she cultivated when she was a young girl branding her cattle and driving tractor and firing guns.
“She has shown time and time again that she is a true cowgirl,” the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg said about O’Connor in a tribute to her in the year 2015.
O’Connor quit this court on June 6, 2006 in order to take care of her husband, who was suffering due to Alzheimer’s. In 2006, President George W. Bush would choose to choose Justice Samuel Alito to take her place.
An alumna of Stanford University, she went on to attend Stanford Law School where she was able to meet and even dated for an extended period of time – her classmate, former chief Justice William Rehnquist. She went to marry a fellow classmate John O’Connor.
After graduating at the age of 18, she was rejected by law firms due to her sexuality. In the end, she set up her own business along with her husband. Then, she was an Arizona state senator, becoming an early female leader. Her role included being a judge at the Maricopa County Superior Court and in 1979, she was appointed to she was appointed to the Arizona Court of Appeals.
“We all bring with us to the court or to any task we undertake our own lifetime of experiences and background,” O’Connor declared in an interview in 2003 on CNN interview. “My perceptions might be different than some of my colleagues’ but at the end of the day we all ought to be able to agree on some sensible solution to the problem,” she added.
The O’Connor Clerk who was a former secretary James Forman argued that her gender did not matter in her decision-making.
“I don’t think there’s any decision you can say, ‘she reached this result because she’s a woman,'” Forman declared.
A key decision on abortion and affirmative action Bush V. Gore: First woman of the Supreme Court US Former Justice Sandra Day OConnor dies
In her time during her tenure, the court was for a while under the “O’Connor Court” because she was the final vote in numerous controversial cases. Her name is perhaps most well-known for her decision for Planned Parenthood v. Casey which, in 1992, reiterated the right of women to choose an abortion. In the case of the new ruling, states could not place any “undue burden” on a woman who is seeking an abortion. The decision could be rescinded at the end of 2022, by a conservative judge, and bolstered by three of President Trump’s nominated candidates.
O’Conner also issued a 5-4 decision defending the Law School’s affirmative action policy in 2003.
A little over two decades later nearly two decades after, Supreme Court announced that it will take a new review of affirmative action in the term 2022.
She also wrote the verdict of the court’s ruling in 2004 against George W. Bush administration’s post-9/11 detainee policy. She wrote, “a state of war is not a blank check.”
She was on the conservative part of the bench but in support of Bush in his victory in 2001 Bush Gore v. Gore case that made sure that the president was a Republican candidate. She also remained unwavering in her support for states rights.
Though she was criticized in the past for her lack of commitment to a strict and quick law She was also known as an unorthodox swing vote and pragmatic judge who approached issues on a case-by-case basis.
A former employee Marci Hamilton claimed that anyone who mentioned O’Connor as a fence sitter is not on the right track.
“Those would be the people who have never met her,” Hamilton stated. “Anyone who has met her knows that she makes up her own mind and is not at all concerned where anyone else is on the spectrum.”
When she left the bench her successor, Alito, moved the court to the left in regards to issues like restrictions on abortions and campaign finance. Alito was Alito who wrote the 2022 decision that ruled against Roe V. Wade and Casey.
After she left the high court and prior to her diagnosed diagnosis O’Connor was a vocal advocate of those suffering from Alzheimer’s disease. She also
A website has been launched dedicated to enticing young people to study civics.
Her husband passed away in 2009 and she is survived by three sons.
O’Connor was aware of the significance of her place in the history in the role of being the first justice woman.
“Let me tell you one reason why I think it’s important, and that is for the public generally to see and respect the fact that in positions of power and authority, that women are well-represented,” O’Connor declared in a 2003 interview to CNN. “That it is not an all-male governance, as it once was.”