Justice Ginsburg makes first visit to Supreme Court since lung cancer surgery

Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg is participating in a private conference with other justices Friday after missing several high-court meetings and dates for health reasons.

Ginsburg is working from her chambers Friday, according to a court spokesperson, and will participate in the in-person closed-door conference Friday morning. She had been working from home and participating in the Court's caseload while recovering from surgery.

Ginsburg, 85, has been recuperating in her home in Washington D.C. from a pulmonary lobectomy at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York after two nodules were discovered in the lower lobe of her left lung, the Supreme Court said in a statement last month. The discovery came incidentally during tests after she fractured several ribs during a fall in November.

The court said both nodules removed during the lung surgery were found to be malignant, but scans performed before surgery indicated no evidence of disease elsewhere in the body. No further treatment has been planned.

The Supreme Court returns from a four-week recess on Tuesday, and it is unclear whether Ginsburg will be on the bench.


After sustaining a fall in November, Ginsburg initially missed a non-argument session when justices took the bench for routine business.

Ginsburg has missed several oral arguments due to her health setback. Prior to her last few absences, Ginsburg had never missed an oral argument since being confirmed to the high court in 1993.

Ginsburg has dealt with a series of health concerns in recent years. She broke two ribs in 2012, and previously battled two bouts of cancer, in 1999 and 2009. She also had a stent implanted in her heart to open a blocked artery in 2014.

The Harvard Law School-educated justice was nominated to the Supreme Court by former President Bill Clinton in 1993 to replace retiring Justice Byron R. White. Ginsburg was Clinton’s first Supreme Court pick.

Prior to ascending to the Supreme Court, Ginsburg became the first woman to receive tenure at Columbia University Law School and is also the co-founder of the American Civil Liberties Union’s Women’s Rights Project.


Ginsburg is the oldest member on the Supreme Court, and her retirement has been a topic of great speculation. However, she reportedly hired clerks for the term that extends into 2020, indicating she has no plans to leave soon.

According to a new Fox News Poll, Ginsburg is the best-liked member of the Supreme Court.

Earlier this month, Ginsburg attended a concert called “Notorious RBG in Song” in Washington, D.C. at the National Museum of Women in the Arts. It was her first public appearance since undergoing lung surgery in December.

 The Associated Press contributed to this report.