CLEVELAND — The nation is mourning the loss of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who died Friday at the age of 87 following a battle with cancer.
A champion for women's rights and gender equality, Ginsburg was confirmed to the court in 1993 and eventually became the leader of its ideologically liberal wing. She was known for her principled opinions and judgements, and even many of her political opponents couldn't help but admire her.
Her death is sure to spark partisan debate over who should replace her, or when that process should even begin. Some politicians have been commenting on that tonight, but most are taking the time to honor an American political legend.
Here's what Northeast Ohio's top political leaders are saying:
U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D)
"Justice Ginsburg shattered glass ceilings for women who haven’t yet been born, and brought our country closer to living up to our founding ideals. Her intellect and passion and commitment to justice were simply unmatched,” said Brown. “I pray that the same force of principles to which she held herself will help guide the leaders of this country. The American people deserve a voice in the momentous decision we now face and it was her dying wish, according to her family, that we wait for their choice to lead us to take office in January to confirm a new justice. We honor Justice Ginsburg best by fighting as hard as we can to preserve her legacy and ensure that women are in all places where decisions are being made."
U.S. Sen. Rob Portman (R)
"I’m saddened to hear of the passing of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. She was a brilliant lawyer and a pioneer in the legal profession as only the second woman to serve on the Supreme Court. She was respected by all who knew her and admired by so many as a trail blazer and a champion for equal rights. Her personal friendship and respect for colleagues across the ideological spectrum, including conservative Justice Antonin Scalia, serves as an example for all of us. Jane and I extend our condolences to her family and her colleagues on their loss."
Gov. Mike DeWine
"I extend my deepest condolences to the family of U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Her work ethic, her devotion to the court, her own fight to break down barriers, her long friendship with Justice Antonin Scalia even though they were opposites philosophically, and her courageous fight against cancer stand as examples to all of us. She served with a strength and dignity that inspires us all. May her memory be a blessing."
U.S. Rep. Jim Jordan (R)
U.S. Rep. Bill Johnson (R)
U.S. Rep. Marcy Kaptur (D)
U.S. Rep. Marcia L. Fudge (D)
"I am deeply saddened by the passing of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg. She was a champion for all Americans and a fierce advocate for women’s rights. A trailblazer before and during her tenure on the High Court, she was a thoughtful, dedicated jurist and a hero who paved the way for countless women in and beyond the legal profession.
"A powerhouse and fiery spirit to the end, Justice Ginsberg was a co-founder of the Women’s Rights Project at the ACLU, prior to becoming a federal Court of Appeals judge. Arguing more than 300 gender discrimination cases, she earned her reputation as a dogged advocate for gender equality and rightfully so.
"Her now vacant seat on the Supreme Court is troubling and will be felt for years to come. Known for her powerful dissents, Justice Ginsberg fought to retain the rights of everyday Americans and promote justice and balance in the Court’s reasoning and decisions. Her loss has dealt a major a blow to the future of civil, human and equal rights under the law. I pray for the health of our republic.
"I send my sincere condolences to the Ginsberg family and all who knew and loved her."
U.S. Rep. Troy Balderson (R)
U.S. Rep. Tim Ryan (D)
"America has lost a giant tonight. Ruth Bader Ginsburg represented the best of this country. She broke down barriers and dedicated her life to ensuring the American Dream could be accessed by every citizen of our nation. As a lawyer, she led the charge for women’s rights and gender equality and secured the legal victory that extended the 14th Amendment to cover gender. She became the second woman to serve on the Supreme Court, and over her 27 years on the court she always stood for what was right and what was just. Her lifetime of work helped our nation live up to the ideals that it was founded upon. The United States of America is a more just and verdant place because she was in it. Andrea and my thoughts and prayers are with Justice Ginsburg’s family tonight."
U.S. Rep. Dave Joyce (R)
U.S. Rep. Anthony Gonzalez (R)
Cleveland Mayor Frank G. Jackson
"The loss of such a strong beacon of justice is a tremendous loss for the whole country. Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s important contributions as a lawyer, judge and Justice have given voice and brought fairness and equity to so many over many decades. She leaves behind a country bettered by her work for generations to come. On behalf of the citizens of the City of Cleveland, I extend my condolences to her family, friends, colleagues and all others who have been touched by her life."