Justice Antonin Scalia Has Died

Antonin Scalia Photo by SCOTUS
Antonin Scalia
Photo by SCOTUS

This morning U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia was found dead in Texas. He had apparently been there for a quail hunt.

From his official Supreme Court biography:

Antonin Scalia, Associate Justice, was born in Trenton, New Jersey, March 11, 1936. He married Maureen McCarthy and has nine children – Ann Forrest, Eugene, John Francis, Catherine Elisabeth, Mary Clare, Paul David, Matthew, Christopher James, and Margaret Jane. He received his A.B. from Georgetown University and the University of Fribourg, Switzerland, and his LL.B. from Harvard Law School, and was a Sheldon Fellow of Harvard University from 1960–1961. He was in private practice in Cleveland, Ohio from 1961–1967, a Professor of Law at the University of Virginia from 1967–1971, and a Professor of Law at the University of Chicago from 1977–1982, and a Visiting Professor of Law at Georgetown University and Stanford University. He was chairman of the American Bar Association’s Section of Administrative Law, 1981–1982, and its Conference of Section Chairmen, 1982–1983. He served the federal government as General Counsel of the Office of Telecommunications Policy from 1971–1972, Chairman of the Administrative Conference of the United States from 1972–1974, and Assistant Attorney General for the Office of Legal Counsel from 1974–1977. He was appointed Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit in 1982. President Reagan nominated him as an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court, and he took his seat September 26, 1986.

This is clearly both a surprise and an event which will change national politics as we know it, both as a campaign issue as well as one of actual governance. It seems awkwardly fitting that the death of Justice Scalia will have the impact of returning to public conscious that the Supreme Court is a co-equal branch of our federal government – one that deserves more public attention and importance than it often receives.

That said, today is about a husband, father, grandfather, and one of the brightest legal minds of our time. Whether you agreed with him or not, his intellect and dedication to his work and his constitutional point of view will be remembered for generations.

There are many of you who will likely want to talk about the political implications of his passing. We understand this. That said, it is our custom to close comments in these events, as there will be plenty of time for the politics to play out. Today is about not only a Justice, but a man with a family that loved him. A man that has served his country well and to the best of his ability. A man that leaves a defined legacy. Today we will honor and remember that man. The politics (here, at least) will wait. And so will the open discussion.

Rest in Peace Justice Scalia. May your family find comfort and peace during this time.