This excerpt is from a piece that originally ran on February 8, 2022.
Thurgood Marshall himself became a powerful dissenter, particularly on capital punishment and civil rights cases, after the liberal Warren court he had joined in 1967 tipped to become a conservative majority only a few years later. “His passionate vision came through in his dissents and was so important, obviously not in changing the results, but in educating the American public about the high stakes involved in Supreme Court decisions,” says Nan Aron, the recently retired founder and president of the Alliance for Justice, a leading liberal judicial advocacy group. “Decades of law students, decades of students studying civics, have read his dissents.”
“Understandably, the President is seeking bipartisan support for his candidate, and certainly I would assume this is a very strategic decision on his part to set out a criteria of someone who, among other things, is a consensus builder,” says Aron, who now teaches law at Georgetown. “But I think perhaps at this moment in time, it’s simply wishful thinking that anyone can persuade the three Trump justices and others to move.”