Justice Stevens on SCOTUS: 'I Didn't Do Well Enough'

Describes time on high court as 'terribly disappointing, gratifying'
By Polly Davis Doig,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 20, 2014 11:31 AM CDT
Justice Stevens on SCOTUS: 'I Didn't Do Well Enough'
Former U.S. Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens speaks at a lecture in Little Rock, Ark., Wednesday, May 30, 2012.   (AP Photo/Danny Johnston)

John Paul Stevens has been piping up recently ahead of his new book, and he continues that trend today with an interview on ABC in which he describes his lengthy tenure on the United States Supreme Court thusly: "It’s really awfully hard because it's a series of individual, important events. And some are terribly disappointing, and some are terribly gratifying. You mix them all together, it's really hard to pass judgment on the entirety. All I can say, I did the best I could. I didn't do well enough on many occasions.”

Stevens also has some words of non-advice for Ruth Bader Ginsburg, a fellow left-leaning judge who many think should retire with Democrats in control in the Senate and the White House. "she doesn’t need my advice, she really doesn’t," he says, though he concedes that it's "certainly [a] natural and appropriate thing to think about your successor. You have to have an interest in who’s going to fill your shoes." But Politico notes that he contends that his decision to retire in 2010 "was not made for any political reason whatsoever; it was my concern about my own health." (More Sunday morning talk shows stories.)

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