Breyer says he did ‘everything’ to stop Roe from being overturned
Retired Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer says he is “very, very, very sorry” for the overthrow of Roe v. Wade, has done “everything” to prevent it from happening and warns colleagues against rigid decisions ‘can bite you in the back’
Newly retired Liberal Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer said he was “very, very, very sorry” that he was on the losing side of the Dobbs decision, which overturned Roe v. Wade.
“And you said did I like this Dobbs decision? Of course I didn’t. Of course I didn’t,” he said in an interview with CNN’s Chris Wallace. ‘Was I happy with it? Not a moment. Have I done everything I can to convince people? Of course of course. But there we are and now we move on. We try to work together.’
He warned his Supreme Court colleagues that overly rigid decisions “will come all around you and bite you in the back.”
‘Because you’ll find something that doesn’t work at all. And the Supreme Court, somewhat different from others, has such a spade problem,” Breyer said.
Dobbs destroyed nearly 50 years of precedent, with the conservative judges writing that the implicit “right to privacy” in the constitution did not exist, throwing decisions on abortion laws back to the states.
Newly retired Liberal Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer said he was “very, very, very sorry” for being on the losing side of the Dobbs decision, which overturned Roe v. Wade
Judge Stephen Breyer (right), who retired earlier this year, sat down with CNN’s Chris Wallace for an interview to air Sunday
Before the decision was handed down in June, a draft of it was released to the press – an unprecedented leak from a source within the Supreme Court.
Wallace asked, “Was there an earthquake in the court?” when the draft of the Dobbs decision was published in Politico.
‘An earthquake?’ asked Breyer. “It was very damaging because something like that just doesn’t happen. It just doesn’t happen. And here we are.’
Breyer retired earlier this year and was replaced by the first black female judge, Ketanji Brown Jackson.
As a Liberal, he decided to resign while the Democrats controlled both the White House and the Senate.
“There are delays, you know, when the party is split between control of the Senate and control of the presidency,” Breyer said. “And sometimes long times go by and I’d rather my own retirement, my own membership of the court, not get involved in what I call those purely political issues.”
He also declined to criticize Ginni Thomas, wife of conservative judge Clarence Thomas, who has been summoned to testify before the House select committee on Jan. 6 about her role in undoing the results of the 2020 presidential election.
“I’m not going through that because I strongly believe that women who are wives, including wives of Supreme Court justices, should make the decisions about how they live their lives, careers, what kind of careers, etc.,” Breyer said. .
“I’m not going to criticize Ginni Thomas, who I like. I’m not going to criticize Clarence, who I like. And here we are,” the liberal judge added.
Breyer said that while there are “sometimes” two separate camps on the bench, the bitterness is “less than you think.”
“Less than you think … but I can’t say never,” Breyer said. “Maybe a little less cheerful, but I don’t mean — I didn’t hear people shouting angrily at each other in that conference room.”