Ruth Bader Ginsburg successor: Who will replace Ruth Bader Ginsburg on the Supreme Court?

Reproductive rights, voting rights, protections from discrimination, the future of criminal justice, the power of the presidency, the rights of immigrants, tax rules and laws, and healthcare for millions of vulnerable Americans are just a few of the issues at stake.

An ideological tilt of this kind on the Supreme Court has not been seen for 50 years.

The leading candidate, Judge Coney Barrett, concerns more progressive politicians with her devout Roman Catholic faith and conservative views on a number of social issues.

At Ms Coney Barrett’s circuit court confirmation hearings, the Democratic senator Dianne Feinstein expressed concern the judge would be guided by church law instead of the constitution.



Meghan Markle's legal costs soar to £1.8MILLION as lawyer gives new details to court

Meghan is suing Associated Newspapers (ANL), the publisher of the Mail on Sunday and MailOnline, over an article detailing a handwritten letter sent to her father Thomas Markle in August 2018. The court heard today that the total costs for both sides in the lead up to and during the trial, which is expected to take place in January, are now an estimated £3million. This includes Meghan’s costs totalling £1.8 million and the newspaper reaching £1.2million.

During the costs and case management hearing today, Jessie Bowhill, who represents the Duchess, said: “The overall total costs figures are £1,798,043.57 for the claimant and £1,230,425 for the defendant.

“At the broad brush level, £1.8 million is a reasonable and proportionate amount for a seven to 10-day trial in the High Court in a case concerning private information, personal data and intellectual property rights of a high-profile individual.”

Meghan’s lawyers also denied she “co-operated” with Omid Scobie and Carolyn Durand in their Finding Freedom biography.

They said the mention of the letter in the book was “extracts from the letter lifted from the defendant’s own articles”.

An application by Associated Newspapers’ lawyers had been put forward to amend their defence ahead of the trial, saying Meghan did work with the authors.

Daily Express royal reporter Richard Palmer said: “The paper has applied to amend its defence to argue Meghan co-operated with the authors of a book, Finding Freedom, to put out their version of a controversy over a letter she sent to her father.

“But Meghan’s lawyers say the authors just “lifted” the letter extracts from the MoS.”

Sections of the letter were published in the Mail on Sunday and also online in February last year.

READ MORE: Meghan Markle sacks Princess Diana’s former lawyer in court case

The Duchess announced she would be bringing legal action in October.

The preliminary hearing today is dealing the timetable for naming witnesses, as well as the trial date and a cap on legal costs.

Last month, Meghan was granted the right to protect the identities of five friends who gave an anonymous interview to US magazine People.

The senior judge said he had concluded that “for the time being at least” Meghan should be granted an order which protects the identities of the individuals.

Meghan’s lawyers had applied for the five friends who gave an interview to People magazine to remain anonymous in reports of the proceedings.

The article, which was published in February last year, reported her friends’ claims against the bullying Meghan said she has faced.

They have only been identified in confidential court documents.



Meghan Markle replaces Princess Diana's former lawyer in court case

David Sherborne, who has represented many high-profile people and celebrities in his legal career including Prince Harry’s late mother, Princess Diana, lost the first round against Associated Newspapers in the Duchess of Sussex’s pre-trial hearing. Now Meghan’s office has confirmed he will be replaced by a senior barrister, Justin Rushbrook QC, according to The Times.

The Duchess’ team said Mr Sherborne, who most recently represented Johnny Depp, had too many “demands on his time” and Mr Rushbrook would replace him as lead counsel.

Meghan’s case is back in court date, where the two sides are expected to set a trial date.

Mr Sherborne, who specialises in privacy, confidentiality and defamation, as well as matrimonial and sports law, lost the first pre-trial hearing in May and Meghan was ordered to pay the newspaper £67,888 in legal costs for that hearing.

He has represented a range of high profile figures including US President Donald Trump and his wife Melania, former Prime Minister Tony Blair and his wife Cherie, Chelsea Clinton, Cheryl Cole, the Spice Girls, Sir Paul McCartney, David Walliams, Kate Moss, Sir Elton John and David Furnish.

Mr Sherborne also worked on the Leveson Inquiry and led high-profile phone hacking claims for celebrities, including Hugh Grant.

Meghan is suing Associated Newspapers, publisher of the Mail on Sunday, the Daily Mail and the MailOnline, after it published extracts from a private handwritten letter to her estranged father, Thomas Markle.

She claims this breached her privacy and copyright.

The Duchess is accusing the publisher of alleged misuse of private information, copyright infringement and breach of the Data Protection Act.

Associated Newspapers wholly denies any wrongdoings.

The publisher has defended itself, claiming that Meghan breached her own privacy by allowing five friends to speak to People Magazine earlier in the year, when one of her friends told the magazine about the letter.

They said the Duchess had written: “Dad, I’m so heartbroken. I love you. I have one father. Please stop victimising me through the media so we can repair our relationship.”

Associated Newspapers said their publishing of the letter was a response to this.



US Election 2020: Why is the Supreme Court so important in US politics?

What does the Supreme Court do?

The ultimate judicial power of the USA is vested in the Supreme Court and it decides on cases affecting the entire country.

The court has the final say on the most contencious and important rules in the land.

Also, the Supreme Court has been instrumental in passing abortion laws, gay marriage laws, healthcare acts and laws regarding equal rights.

Also, it has the final ruling on appeals for executions.

Cases are brought to the court if they are appealed from lower courts, and they only deal with issues that are usually of national interest.

RBG was originally appointed in 1993 by then-president Bill Clinton, and justices are appointed by a president when one either retires or dies.



Pelosi says she will not leverage shutdown to avoid Senate vote on court seat

“None of us has any interest in shutting down government, that has such a harmful and shameful impact on so many people in our country,” Pelosi told ABC’s George Stephanopoulos on “This Week.”

Asked if there was any way the Democrats could slow down Senate Republicans, Pelosi said Sunday, “Everyone to get out there and vote.” And pressed again on what Democrats may do, the House speaker said: “We have our options. We have arrows in our quiver that I’m not about to discuss right now.”

Bill Clinton: 'Superficially hypocritical' for Trump and Republicans to push to fill Supreme Court vacancy
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and President Donald Trump, less than 24 hours following the 87-year-old justice’s death, were engaged in a pressure campaign to hold the Republican conference together and push a nominee through the Senate Judiciary Committee and to a full Senate vote before the end of the year.
Democrats, meanwhile, began discussing their options Saturday, with senators all vowing a furious fight to keep the seat vacant until next year when a new Senate convenes and when Joe Biden may occupy the White House. While no specific course of action was detailed, Democrats said they planned to engage in an all-out battle to stop the nomination in its tracks by pressuring four Republicans to break ranks.

On Sunday, Pelosi said Trump is pushing to fill Ginsburg’s seat so quickly because Supreme Court oral arguments on the Affordable Care Act begin on November 10.

“The President thinks this isn’t about coronavirus, it is. The President is rushing to make some kind of a decision because he, November 10 is when the oral arguments begin on the Affordable Care Act. He doesn’t want to crush the virus. He wants to crush the Affordable Care Act,” she said.

Several Democrats have called for an expansion of the Supreme Court if a nominee is pushed through before the next President and the Democrats receive a majority in the Senate. Pelosi, though, did not comment directly on the suggestion, saying, “Our main goal and I think Ruth Bader Ginsburg would want that to be to protect the integrity of the election.”

“Let’s just win this election,” she said. “Let’s hope that the President will see the light.”

Donald Trump could 'ensure right-wing values for DECADES' with Supreme Court judge pick

The new twist in a bitter election campaign follows the death of 87- year-old Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, of pancreatic cancer. Justice Ginsburg was only the second woman to be appointed to the Supreme Court, and served for 27 years. She became an icon to the left for her progressive agenda on divisive social issues such as  equal rights for women, abortion and same sex-sex marriages, but was also revered by the right.

Yesterday tributes flowed from across the political spectrum, with every living former US President joined  by other politicians and celebrities to praise her work and dedication to justice. 

Presidential candidate Joe Biden said “she stood for all of us” while President Trump called her “a titan of the law …renowned for her brilliant mind and powerful dissents  who demonstrated one can disagree without being disagreeable.”

The Duchess of Sussex praised her “incomparable and indelible legacy” adding: “She has been a true inspiration to me since I was a girl. Honour her, remember her, act for her.”

But Justice Ginsburg’s death, just six weeks before American voters take to the polls, has caused a political storm, with Democrats calling for her replacement to wait until after the election. 

READ MORE: Ruth Bader Ginsburg: Why is RBG so important to the US Senate?

The stakes are high, with Supreme Court Justices serving for life and a new Trump appointee inexorably changing the balance of the US’ most senior court to six Republicans and just three Democrats. 

“Supreme Court justices are important because, unlike what the founding fathers intended, they’ve become judge activists.  These courts have come to settle disputes over abortion and immigration which should be settled by legislation,” said Dr Ted Malloch, a friend and former advisor to Trump.

Before dying Ginsburg had made it known that she wanted her replacement chosen after the election. 

Biden echoed those calls, saying: “There is no doubt that the voters should pick the president and the president should pick the justice for the Senate to consider.

“In this case, the Senate is still Republican- controlled but so is the president. If they all vote with him, his nominee gets through.”

High on the list is appeal court judge and mother-of-seven Amy Coney Barrett. The former law professor, who is only 48 and clerked for Scalia, is known for her religious faith.

Malloch added: “While death is always sad, Trump now has an opportunity to speak to his political base. 

“If he’s is wise, and he is, he will appoint Barrett. She’s relatively young, a woman, and a mother-of-seven. 

“By making the right choice he can turn out 30-40 million hard core voters and at the same time change American history and culture, ensuring a legacy of right wing values  for the next three or four decades.”



Donald Trump could 'ensure legacy of right-wing values' with Supreme Court judge pick

The new twist in a bitter election campaign follows the death of 87- year-old Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, of pancreatic cancer. Justice Ginsburg was only the second woman to be appointed to the Supreme Court, and served for 27 years. She became an icon to the left for her progressive agenda on divisive social issues such as  equal rights for women, abortion and same sex-sex marriages, but was also revered by the right.

Yesterday tributes flowed from across the political spectrum, with every living former US President joined  by other politicians and celebrities to praise her work and dedication to justice. 

Presidential candidate Joe Biden said “she stood for all of us” while President Trump called her “a titan of the law …renowned for her brilliant mind and powerful dissents  who demonstrated one can disagree without being disagreeable.”

The Duchess of Sussex praised her “incomparable and indelible legacy” adding: “She has been a true inspiration to me since I was a girl. Honour her, remember her, act for her.”

But Justice Ginsburg’s death, just six weeks before American voters take to the polls, has caused a political storm, with Democrats calling for her replacement to wait until after the election. 

READ MORE: Ruth Bader Ginsburg: Why is RBG so important to the US Senate?

The stakes are high, with Supreme Court Justices serving for life and a new Trump appointee inexorably changing the balance of the US’ most senior court to six Republicans and just three Democrats. 

“Supreme Court justices are important because, unlike what the founding fathers intended, they’ve become judge activists.  These courts have come to settle disputes over abortion and immigration which should be settled by legislation,” said Dr Ted Malloch, a friend and former advisor to Trump.

Before dying Ginsburg had made it known that she wanted her replacement chosen after the election. 

Biden echoed those calls, saying: “There is no doubt that the voters should pick the president and the president should pick the justice for the Senate to consider.

“In this case, the Senate is still Republican- controlled but so is the president. If they all vote with him, his nominee gets through.”

High on the list is appeal court judge and mother-of-seven Amy Coney Barrett. The former law professor, who is only 48 and clerked for Scalia, is known for her religious faith.

Malloch added: “While death is always sad, Trump now has an opportunity to speak to his political base. 

“If he’s is wise, and he is, he will appoint Barrett. She’s relatively young, a woman, and a mother-of-seven. 

“By making the right choice he can turn out 30-40 million hard core voters and at the same time change American history and culture, ensuring a legacy of right wing values  for the next three or four decades.”



Ruth Bader Ginsburg dies aged 87 – Donald Trump to appoint Supreme Court replacement

Ms Ginsburg was an iconic leader of women’s rights in America and became a prominent feminist figurehead. She died on Friday from metastatic pancreatic cancer in Washington DC surrounded by her family.

 

Ms Ginsburg was the oldest sitting justice on the US Supreme Court.

In a statement, Chief Justice John Roberts said: “Our Nation has lost a jurist of historic stature.

“We at the Supreme Court have lost a cherished colleague. Today we mourn, but with confidence that future generations will remember Ruth Bader Ginsburg as we knew her – a tireless and resolute champion of justice.”

Ms Ginsburg’s death will spark political tensions over who succeeds her as the US presidential elections approach.

 

The Supreme Court Justice often has the final say on highly controversial laws between the US federal government and states.

Since taking office President Trump has appointed two judges.

The current court is seen to mostly have a 5-4 conservative majority.

On Friday night, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has said Mr Trump’s nomination for Ms Ginsburg’s replacement will receive a vote on the Senate floor.

Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said in a statement that American’s should have their vote in the US election before the vacancy is filled.

He said: “The American people should have a voice in the selection of their next Supreme Court Justice. Therefore, this vacancy should not be filled until we have a new president.”

More to follow…



Ruth Bader Ginsburg dies aged 87 – Donald Trump to appoint Supreme Court replacement

Ms Ginsburg was an iconic leader of women’s rights in America and became a prominent feminist figurehead.

She died on Friday from metastatic pancreatic cancer in Washington DC surrounded by her family.

Ms Ginsburg was the oldest sitting justice on the US Supreme Court.

More to follow…



Meghan Markle’s court win could be overturned: Judge’s careful phrasing leaves door open

The Duchess of Sussex is suing the publisher over five articles published in the Mail on Sunday and MailOnline that reproduced parts of a handwritten letter she had sent to her father, Thomas Markle. Meghan claims this breached her privacy and copyright. However, the publisher has defended itself, claiming that Meghan breached her own privacy by allowing five friends to speak to People Magazine earlier in the year, when one of her friends told the magazine about the letter.

They said the Duchess had written: “Dad, I’m so heartbroken. I love you. I have one father. Please stop victimising me through the media so we can repair our relationship.”

Associated Newspapers said their publishing of the letter was a response to this.

The Duchess’ team then countered by saying she was “unaware” her friends were going to do this and had not given them consent to do so.

While this is key to the case, Meghan wanted to keep her five friends anonymous and she won this battle on August 5.

READ MORE: Meghan and Harry left red-faced after huge social media blunder

meghan markle

Meghan’s court win could be overturned (Image: GETTY)

thomas markle

Meghan’s father Thomas Markle (Image: YouTube (Entertainment Tonight, originally Channel 5))

Judge Mark Warby ruled at London’s High Court that their names could not be published as part of her lawsuit ‒ however, there was an important caveat.

He said: “I have concluded that, for the time being at least, the court should grant the claimant the order she seeks.”

The key phrase here is, of course, “for the time being”, which implies this can be overturned at a later date and the names released if it is deemed necessary.

In her lawsuit, Meghan’s team said they believed her friends had been driven to speaking to People Magazine anonymously, because Kensington Palace had “mandated” that those close to the Duchess should give “no comment” when approached by the press.

prince harry meghan markle

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle stepped down as senior royals at the end of March (Image: GETTY)

She believes they shared her frustration at being “silenced” and that they were “rightly concerned for her welfare, specifically as she was pregnant”.

Her lawyers also argued that the friends, who had condemned Meghan’s alleged bullying from the media, were not parties to the case and had a “basic right to privacy”.

However, Associated Newspapers attorney Antony White said during the court hearing that the friends were potential witnesses in the case, and keeping their names secret “would be a heavy curtailment of the media’s and defendant’s entitlement to report this case and the public’s right to know about it”.

The judge acknowledged he has to balance “the competing demands of confidentiality and open justice”.

DON’T MISS
Queen cannot be arrested and staff are ‘immune to civil arrest’ [INSIGHT]Royal bombshell: How monarch ‘nearly voted in House of Lords’ [REVEALED]Royal snub: How Brexit triggered surge in Australian republicanism [ANALYSIS]

meghan markle news

Meghan Markle is suing Associated Newspapers (Image: GETTY)

In the end, he ruled in favour of anonymity, saying it would serve justice by shielding Meghan’s friends from the “glare of publicity” in the pretrial stage of the case.

He said: “Generally, it does not help the interests of justice if those involved in litigation are subjected to, or surrounded by, a frenzy of publicity.

“At trial, that is a price that may have to be paid in the interests of transparency. But it is not a necessary concomitant of the pretrial phase.”

While the five friends’ names are included in the confidential court document, they have been identified in public using only the letters A, B, C, D and E.

A source close to the team representing Meghan told People Magazine: “The Duchess felt it was necessary to take this step to try and protect her friends – as any of us would – and we’re glad this was clear.

“We are happy that the Judge has agreed to protect these five individuals.”

The full trial will take place next year.

Pod Save the Queen is hosted by Ann Gripper and features Daily Mirror royal editor Russell Myers.

Mr Myers pointed out that the “killer line” given by the judge meant his decision could change, potentially if the five friends are called to give evidence.

He said: “They had yet another hearing which was to iron out the details of whether these five friends would be named in the court case.

“The issue is that the judge said he won’t grant permission for them to be named ‘at the moment’ and this is the killer line because it may transpire that these five friends are called to give evidence and we have spoken before about how this is really, really integral to the case.”

He added that Meghan’s claim that naming her friends would be an unacceptable price to pay because their lives would be ruined is “absolute nonsense”.

To find out details of coronavirus in your area, please fill in your postcode below.

He claimed it does not take a “brain surgeon” to work out who these friends are, and that numerous articles have named who they suspect are the friends.

Mr Myers said: “Meghan said via her lawyers that it would be an unacceptable price to pay if the judge did grant permission for them to be named because they made representation essentially saying that if these five people would be named then the press would be all over them, they would have their lives trampled on.

“I mean, that is absolute nonsense because these five friends have been named in countless articles – it doesn’t take a brain surgeon to work out who they are, it’s all over certain articles.”

To subscribe to Pod Save the Queen go to your normal podcast provider.