Since the Supreme Court ended its session in June, all eyes are on Justice Stephen Breyer. If he were to retire, it would give President Joe Biden a chance to fulfill one of his major campaign promises: to appoint a woman of color to the bench.
This week, we’ll open up history class and talk again about the women shortlisted for the bench.
In the history of the United States, there have been 114 justices to sit on the Supreme Court, including the 9 that are up there now. Only 4 have been women. But those four haven’t been the only ones considered for the court. Last year we found a new book, “Shortlisted: Women in the Shadows of the Supreme Court.” The book takes an in-depth look at the stories of those women who were in the conversation to be on the nation’s top court, going all the way back to the Herbert Hoover administration. We speak with co-author Hannah Brenner Johnson, an associate professor of law and the vice Dean for Student and Academic Affairs at California Western School of Law in San Diego. We started by talking about how she decided to take on this project.
“Shortlisted: Women in the Shadows of the Supreme Court” is published by NYU Press.
The press and the Supreme Court have an interesting relationship. That’s the topic of today’s Academic Minute.
This interview originally aired in September 2020.