Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg was not on the bench as usual Monday as the court heard oral arguments for the first time since her cancer surgery last month.
Prior to Monday, Ginsburg, 85, had not missed a day of argument for any reason other than those cases from which she had recused herself, CNBC reported.
Ginsburg, a member of the court’s liberal wing, will still work from home.
Ginsburg would participate in the two cases to be argued Monday by reading briefs, other filings and the argument transcript, Kathleen Arberg, a Supreme Court spokeswoman, told The New York Times.
Although Ginsburg will be able to vote in the case by reviewing transcripts, she will not be able to ask questions Monday.
*Developing* 👇 https://t.co/4wSzGLW0o9
— Sean Hannity (@seanhannity) January 7, 2019
#RBG is old and sick. It’s time to for Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg to retire and walkaway on her own. She’s too old, too sick, and too biased to be a mentally strong judge.
— Derek in A town (@Donkey_McSauce) January 7, 2019
Trump may get another appointment…👏👏👏
— Sam 🇺🇲✌️ (@Sam_Howard6) January 7, 2019
Ginsburg missed a court session in November after a fall, but it was not a session during which arguments were heard.
On Dec. 21, Ginsburg underwent surgery to remove two cancerous growths from her left lung. She was discharged from Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center on Dec. 25.
At that time, doctors said there was no sign of any remaining cancer and that no further treatment was planned.
Ginsburg underwent cancer surgeries in 1999 and 2009, but neither of those surgeries caused her to miss court sessions.
Ginsburg was nominated to the Supreme Court by former President Bill Clinton in 1993. As the oldest member of the court, there has been speculation that her age and illness might lead to her retirement. However, Fox News reported that she has hired clerks for the 2019-2020 term, seeming to indicate that she has no plans to leave.
“As long as I can do the job full steam, I will do it,” Ginsburg said in 2018, according to The Washington Post.
She also made comments last year to the effect that she might stay on the court for five more years, USA Today reported. She noted that former Associate Justice John Paul Stevens served until age 90.
If Ginsburg were to retire soon, it would be the third vacancy to be filled during the term of President Donald Trump, who has vowed to appoint conservative jurists to the court.
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