April 9, 2010

High court: Justice Stevens to retire

Posted: 03:11 PM ET

Washington (CNN) - Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens said Friday he will retire this year, giving President Obama another opportunity to shape the nation's highest court. 

Stevens, who turns 90 on April 20 and has served nearly 35 years on the court, announced his resignation in a brief letter delivered to the White House at 10:30 a.m. Friday.

"My dear Mr. President," Stevens wrote. "Having concluded that it would be in the best interests of the court to have my successor appointed and confirmed well in advance of the commencement of the court's next term, I shall retire from regular active service as an associate justice ... effective the next day after the court rises for the summer recess this year."

He signed it, "Most respectfully yours."

White House counsel Bob Bauer discussed Stevens' retirement by telephone at 10:45 a.m. with Obama, who was returning from Europe aboard Air Force One. Obama is expected to make an announcement after his arrival in Washington on Friday afternoon.

Stevens was at a second home Friday in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, a court official said.

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Filed under: Justice • Politics • President Obama • Supreme Court

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Cajazz76:24:8   April 9th, 2010 7:33 pm ET

The one decision Gerald Ford never tripped over...good judge and a good man..enjoy the fishing..and live well and happy until your ready to go. It will be extremely difficult to replace you with a like justice. This country and all its citizens should feel deeply indebted to you for all the great years you spend serving on the bench....

Jessie from Auckland, NZ   April 10th, 2010 2:47 am ET

It is amazing he has kept going to this age. What a man. Wish him all the best for his retirement. Need to take it easy now, put your feet up and relax and enjoy it all! You deserve it.

Oyiyole James   April 10th, 2010 3:27 am ET

What a good justice. May you live to eat for the rest of your life. The services you rendered to humanity will ever remain green in our memories.

Ted   April 11th, 2010 10:53 am ET

He is a good man, have a pleasant retirement.

I personally feel there should be an age limit on judges on all courts, 68 sound just fine with me. At that age they must retire to make place for a younger, more up to date person.
What does an 85 years old person know about the present life and needs of the country? Very little, they live in the past.

TonyInLargo   April 11th, 2010 9:08 pm ET

Thank you for your service Judge Stevens. Seven words of gratitude for an enormous life as a public servant don't seem like much, but they are sincere. I wish you a very happy and well deserved retirement.

Smith360   April 12th, 2010 2:16 am ET

Thank you Justice Stevens for helping to provide a balance to what could have been a very out of balanced Supreme Court.

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