Significant U.S. Supreme Court Decisions Authored by Justice Ginsburg

The above link discusses significant decisions written for the majority by Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. She had a significant impact. But also, I have seem Facebook posts and public information about Justice Ginsburg’s impact on law which are confusing to me or incorrect, such as crediting her with equal rights created by statutes passed before she took the Supreme Court bench.

Yet, sometimes a statute can follow a SCOTUS decision in which the Petitioner did not prevail and a Justice dissents. For example, the United States Supreme Court (SCOTUS)limited the remedies to, Lilly Ledbetter, an employee in Ledbetter v. Goodyear Tire (2007). Ms. Ledbetter had claimed unequal pay compared to her male co-workers. The majority of the Justices held , basically, that time limitations to file a claim precluded the relief Ms. Ledbetter sought for her unequal pay. Congress amended Title VII a few years later to provide a remedy for employees such as Lilly Ledbetter. Justice Ginsburg did not pass that legislation, of course, but did she write a comprehensive dissent concerning unequal pay, strongly disagreeing with the holding of the majority of the Court.

Even a strict constructionist of the law, as are many of the so-called conservative Justices, may welcome an outcome of Congress, not SCOTUS, providing a remedy because SCOTUS may not rewrite a statute (from one perspective) but certainly can enforce the law. One example is Bostock v. Clayton County, Georgia, 590 U.S. _, 2020 WL 3146686 (June 15, 2020) in which the Majority held: “An employer who fires an individual merely for being gay or transgender violates Title VII.” Justice Ginsburg heard and participated in this case but did not write the Majority opinion — Gorsuch, J., delivered the opinion of the Court, in which Roberts, C. J., and Ginsburg, Breyer, Sotomayor, and Kagan, JJ., joined. Alito, J., filed a dissenting opinion, in which Thomas, J., joined. Kavanaugh, J., filed a dissenting opinion. But I digress.

I thank Rosemary, my wife and a very successful Federal prosecutor and supervisor, for sending me the above link concerning Justice Ginsburg’s decisions.

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