'A fervent icon of equal rights’; Local leaders remember Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg

Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg dead at 87

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - Local leaders are reacting to the death of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who passed away at the age of 87 due to complications from metastatic pancreatic cancer.

Justice Ginsburg, a diminutive yet towering women’s rights champion who became the court’s second female justice, died Friday at her home in Washington. Ginsburg was also co-founder of the Women’s Rights Project at the ACLU.

North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper called Ginsburg a “fervent icon of equal rights” passing, and called on the Supreme Court to “continue her legacy of justice and fairness.”

“The country has lost a fervent icon of equal rights in the death of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, a legal pioneer for women’s rights who insisted on fair treatment for all. Our hearts are with her family and her fellow justices on the Supreme Court. The Court must continue her legacy of justice and fairness,” Gov. Cooper said.

North Carolina Supreme Court Chief Justice Cheri Beasley talked about Ginsburg as a trailblazer for justice and equality.

“Our country has lost a great jurist in Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. She was a trailblazer whose commitment to justice and equality was matched only by her principled protection of our constitution. My prayers are with her family as they grieve her loss and celebrate her legacy,” Chief Justice Beasley said.

Beasley shared a picture of her with Ginsburg.

North Carolina Supreme Court Chief Justice Cheri Beasley with Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.
North Carolina Supreme Court Chief Justice Cheri Beasley with Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. (Source: North Carolina Judicial Branch)
Leaders reflect on Ginsburg's passing

Congresswoman Alma Adams (NC-12) provided a statement on the passing of Supreme Court Associate Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, calling her “one of the greatest fighters American women have ever had."

"Ruth Bader Ginsberg was the conscience of the Court and the one of the greatest fighters American women have ever had. Justice Ginsberg’s dissents spoke for people of conscience with a righteous anger and moral clarity that is too often missing from the public sphere. Her lifetime of advocacy for women and equality extended far beyond her service on the bench, and all Americans – not just women – owe her an incalculable debt for removing the foot of the patriarchy off our necks, allowing women to breathe free in a country that still does not always see us as equal. Though she is irreplaceable, Justice Ginsberg will have a successor. She would be the first person to say her successor should be a woman who believes, as she did, that ‘women belong in all places where decisions are being made. I am devastated by this loss, and my prayers are with not only her family, but every person who looked to her for inspiration and courage,” Congresswoman Adams said.

North Carolina U.S. Senator Thom Tillis honored Justice Ginsburg as “a pioneer who served our nation with distinction.”

“Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg was a pioneer who served our nation with distinction on the Supreme Court for 27 years, serving 23 of those beside her dear friend - but polar opposite - Justice Scalia. She demonstrated that we can disagree on fundamental issues but remain civil,” Sen. Tillis said.

Senator Richard Burr (R-NC) provided a statement, saying Justice Ginsburg “faced many challenges, but never let them serve as setbacks” throughout her career.

“I am saddened to learn of the passing of Justice Ginsburg. Throughout her life and career, Justice Ginsburg faced many challenges, but never let them serve as setbacks. She was a trailblazer and a tireless advocate for equality and opportunity for all Americans. While she and I may not have agreed on many policy issues, I know her unique voice will be greatly missed by her beloved family, her friends, and her colleagues on the Court,” Sen. Burr said.

Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) provided a statement.

"It was with great sadness that I learned of the passing of Justice Ginsburg. Justice Ginsburg was a trailblazer who possessed tremendous passion for her causes. She served with honor and distinction as a member of the Supreme Court. While I had many differences with her on legal philosophy, I appreciate her service to our nation. My thoughts and prayers are with her family and friends. May she Rest In Peace,” Sen. Graham said.

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