Inevitable Hillary Clinton for Supreme Court Talk Begins


It’s only been a few hours since John Paul Stevens announced that he’ll step down from the Supreme Court this summer, but speculation over who his replacement will be, of course, is already rampant. The White House is well prepared for the decision; not only did it know Stevens’s retirement was approaching, but it already has a bunch of candidates lined up from the last go-round. According to ABC News, Obama already “has a list of fewer than 10 possible nominees,” including the widely discussed Solicitor General Elena Kagan, Judge Diane Wood, and Judge Merrick Garland. Other names being mentioned as “outside the box” picks are Homeland Security secretary Janet Napolitano and Michigan governor Jennifer Granholm.

But there’s also some chatter on the Internet promoting another big name: Hillary Clinton. Slate senior editor Emily Bazelon writes that Clinton would be “a rock star of a Supreme Court justice” whose only downside is that she’s already 62. Prominent liberal blogger Ezra Klein tweeted, “By the by, have always thought Hillary Clinton would make a good justice.” Daily Kos leader Markos Moulitsas, another prominent liberal voice, retweeted some other guy suggesting, “What about Hillary as Supreme Court nominee?”

Our question is, would Hillary even want it? That would all depend on whether she still — despite all her denials, some not so convincing — wants to be president someday. If she does, becoming a justice would kill that dream, unless she plans on sitting on the bench for only four years or so. If she’s given up on the idea, though, she’d probably be relieved to leave the State Department behind.