An ad paid for by a progressive group calling for Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer to retire is all set to launch tomorrow in The New York Times, reports CNN.
Demand Justice, a progressive organization targeting the Supreme Court’s conservative majority, paid for the ad, which 18 scholars from various universities reportedly also signed onto Wednesday.
If Breyer voluntarily retires, the campaign hopes President Joe Biden will have the opportunity to fill his spot with a younger, left-leaning justice before Republicans have a chance to win back the Senate after 2022 midterm elections.
"It is time for Justice Stephen Breyer to announce his intent to retire from the Supreme Court. Breyer is a remarkable jurist, but with future control of a closely divided Senate uncertain, it is best for the country that President Biden have the opportunity to nominate a successor without delay," the ad statement says, reported CNN.
Much of the urgency behind opening one of the court’s nine seats lies behind the staunch opposition that will face a Democratic nominee if Sen. Mitch McConnell (R- Ky.) becomes the Senate majority leader, assuming Republicans regain control of th Senate—after midterms.
Earlier this week, McConnell vowed that if Republicans won the Senate, he would block the nomination, considering Biden is from the opposite party during an election year.
"In fact, no, I don’t think either party if it controlled, if it were different from the president, would confirm a Supreme Court nominee in the middle of an election," said McConnell, according to USA Today.
President Bill Clinton appointed Breyer in 1994, giving him almost three decades of experience as a justice. The Associate Justice is also the oldest sitting Supreme Court Justice, approaching 83-years-old this summer.
Democrats also hope that Breyer will retire now to assure a liberal predecessor, unlike the Trump-appointee Justice Amy Coney Barrett who filled the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s seat last year.