The Real Reason Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg Is Missing Supreme Court Arguments For The First Time

It’s been a rocky few months for beloved Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. The 85-year old Supreme Court Justice fell while in her office in late 2018 and cracked her ribs, and most recently she was hospitalized to undergo cancer surgery –removing two cancerous growth from her left lung. Though the Brooklyn native was discharged from a New York hospital on Christmas Day 2018, Justice Ginsburg has not been seen in public since.

Now, for the first time since she was nominated to the Supreme Court in 1993 — over 25 years ago, Justice Ginsburg is missing Supreme Court arguments. Here’s the real reason she still hasn’t returned to work.

A tough surgery

Doctors discovered cancer on Supreme Court Justice Ginsburg’s lung when she was being treated for her three broken ribs As a result, she went in for a pulmonary lobectomy — which removed the cancer. After the surgery, a spokesperson for the SCOTUS said that there was “no evidence of any remaining disease.” This is not Justice Ginsburg’s first-time battling cancer. She had had two earlier cancer surgeries, one in 1999 and the other in 2009 and she never missed court arguments. However, with her wiser age and this particular surgery — things are a bit more complicated these days.

According to VeryWell Health, “Returning to your usual lifestyle can be a little frustrating following lung cancer surgery—especially if you were not having a lot of symptoms from your lung cancer prior to the procedure. Some people have found that it helps to notice progress every day—such as having tubes progressively removed. While you may be able to return to work in six to eight weeks, your doctor will advise you to avoid heavy lifting for the first several months. This is to prevent strain on the chest muscles and incision.”

Since Ginsburg is battling fatigue and trying to recover, Chief Justice John Roberts announced that Justice Ginsberg would be deciding the argued cases “on the basis of the briefs and transcripts of oral arguments.”

Ginsburg on retiring

In July 2018 the Supreme Court Justice spoke about her future retirement to CNN saying, “I’m now 85. My senior colleague Justice John Paul Stevens, he stepped down when he was 90. So think I have about at least five more years.” For now, we do know that the pint-sized Columbia Law graduate has hired clerks for the term that extends into 2020. It looks like she at least intends to be around until Donald Trump finishes out his current presidential term.

Though the Supreme Court is set to hear even more arguments as this week presses on, we don’t expect to see Justice Ginsberg returning to the bench until Feb. 2019. We just hope that we she does, she is ready to tackle everything coming her way into 2020.

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