Ruth Bader Ginsburg dead at 87; tributes pour in from across political spectrum

Called a 'trailblazer' by former President George W. Bush

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Tributes poured in Friday for Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, whose popularity with liberals young and old surpassed her high court colleagues and made her a cultural icon revered for her legal acumen and trailblazing spirit.

Ginsburg, who was 87 and had battled cancer on multiple occasions, was labeled a "resolute champion of justice" in a statement from Chief Justice John Roberts, her colleague on the court she was appointed to in 1993.

"Our nation has lost a justice of historic stature," Chief Justice John Roberts said. "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 tired and resolute champion of justice."

President Trump, speaking after a rally in Minnesota, learned the news from reporters and said he was saddened.

"She led an amazing life," Trump said. "Whether you agreed or not, she was an amazing woman who led an amazing life. Sad to hear that."

Joe Biden, the former vice president and current Democratic presidential nominee, said the choice of a candidate to replace Ginsburg should be left up to the winner in November's election.

"We learned of the death of Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who was not only a giant in the legal profession but a beloved figure," Biden said. "My heart goes out to those who cared for her and about her."

Former President Bill Clinton, who appointed Ginsburg to the court, said the justice left an indelible mark on American jurisprudence.

"We have lost one of the most extraordinary Justices ever to serve on the Supreme Court," Clinton said. "Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s life and landmark opinions moved us closer to a more perfect union. And her powerful dissents reminded us that we walk away from our Constitution’s promise at our peril."

The man who followed Clinton into the White House, former President George W. Bush, who rarely found himself on the same ideological side as Ginsburg, praised the high court justice as a "smart and humorous trailblazer."

"Laura and I join our fellow Americans in mourning the loss of Ruth Bader Ginsburg," Bush said in a statement. "She dedicated many of her 87 remarkable years to the pursuit of justice and equality, and she inspired more than one generation of women and girls. Justice Ginsburg loved our country and the law. Laura and I are fortunate to have known this smart and humorous trailblazer, and we send our condolences to the Ginsburg family."

READ IT: SUPREME COURT 'S STATEMENT ON PASSING OF RUTH BADER GINSBURG

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, who, like other key Democrats called for Ginsburg's seat to be filled only after the November presidential election, echoed Bush's "trailblazer" plaudit.

"Tonight, we mourn the passing of a giant in American history, a champion for justice, a trailblazer for women," Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said in a tweet. "She would want us all to fight as hard as we can to preserve her legacy."

Former President Jimmy Carter, who appointed Ginsburg to the U.S. Court of Appeals in 1980, called her a “beacon of justice” and vowed to pray for her family.

“Rosalynn and I are saddened by the passing of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg,” Carter said in a statement. “A powerful legal mind and a staunch advocate for gender equality, she has been a beacon of justice during her long and remarkable career. We join countless Americans in mourning the loss of a truly great woman."

SCHUMER: GINSBURG VACANCY SHOULD NOT BE FILLED UNTIL 'WE HAVE A NEW PRESIDENT'

Ginsburg’s death is a “devastating” loss for the country, said House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, calling the late jurist an “icon” with a “towering intellect.”

“Justice Ginsberg embodied justice, brilliance and goodness, and her passing is an incalculable loss for our democracy and for all who sacrifice and strive to build a better future for our children.

Ginsburg's "sharp legal mind, tenacity and resilience leave a remarkable imprint on our nation and her legacy will live on for generations to come," said Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa.

Senate Minority Whip Dick Durbin, D-Ill., said Ginsburg will not be forgotten.

“The Supreme Court’s most valiant champion for justice in our lifetime is gone," Durbin said. "Justice Ginsburg was an American hero."

Democratic Sens. Kirsten Gillibrand, N.Y., Dick Durbin, Ill., and Mazie Hirono, Hawaii, all commemorated Ginsburg in tweets after her death.

Those close in President Trump's orbit heaped praise on the former justice as well. President Trump's son Eric Trump tweeted: "Justice Ginsburg was a remarkable woman with an astonishing work ethic. She was a warrior with true conviction and she has my absolute respect! #RIP"

"Justice Ginsburg was so inspirational to me," former Acting Director of National Intelligence Richard Grenell tweeted. "As a cancer survivor, she showed us that she could beat cancer multiple times - not just once. RIP, you warrior."

Former White House adviser Kellyanne Conway similarly said Ginsburg "led a remarkable life of consequence. She worked with passion & conviction, inspired many women, offered hope to other cancer survivors. Prayers to her loved ones. May She Rest In Peace."

Ginsburg famously enjoyed a close friendship with her colleague, former Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia. Scalia's son Christopher shared memories of his father and her's relationship.

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"I'm very sad to hear about the passing of my parents' good friend, and my father's wonderful colleague, Justice Ginsburg. May her memory be a blessing," he said.