Lawmakers pay tribute to late Justice Stevens

Lawmakers pay tribute to late Justice Stevens
© Getty

Lawmakers paid tribute to the late Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens on Tuesday evening after the top court announced he had died at the age of 99. 

A leading liberal during his nearly 35 years on the high court from 1975-2010, Stevens played a central role in key decisions, including bolstering laws to protect civil rights, abortion access and the environment. Prior to his judicial career, he served as an intelligence officer during World War II, breaking Japanese radio codes and ultimately earning a Bronze Star.

ADVERTISEMENT

“From breaking codes in World War II to breaking down barriers for civil rights, Justice John Paul Stevens lived up to those words above the Court: Equal Justice Under Law. Our nation was better for his service and we mourn his loss,” Sen. Kamala HarrisKamala Devi HarrisCastro hits fundraising threshold for December debate Poll: Majority of voters name TV as primary news source Buttigieg: Harris 'deserves to be under anybody's consideration' for vice president MORE (D-Calif.) tweeted. 

“John Paul Stevens served with integrity and honor on the Supreme Court for over 3 decades. He was a dedicated public servant who put the law and the Constitution ahead of politics. Saddened to hear of his passing. My deepest condolences to his family and loved ones,” Sen. Cory BookerCory Anthony BookerCastro hits fundraising threshold for December debate The Hill's 12:30 Report: Pelosi says House will move forward with impeachment Booker: Primary voters 'being denied' their candidates of choice MORE (D-N.J.), a fellow White House hopeful, echoed. 

“Justice John Paul Stevens was a great man and a model jurist: fair, wise, compassionate. A champion for civil rights, equality, and accountability who devoted his life to the ideal of equal justice under law. Our judiciary today needs more like him. He will be sorely missed,” Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerOvernight Health Care — Presented by Johnson & Johnson — Democrats call on Supreme Court to block Louisiana abortion law | Michigan governor seeks to pause Medicaid work requirements | New front in fight over Medicaid block grants House, Senate Democrats call on Supreme Court to block Louisiana abortion law Why a second Trump term and a Democratic Congress could be a nightmare scenario for the GOP MORE (D-N.Y.) said. 

“At this fraught moment, John Paul Stevens reminds us of what a Justice should be. He cast aside party and applied the Constitution to protect the vulnerable and hold accountable the powerful. His eloquent dissent in Citizens United reminds us of the work still to do,” Sen. Chris Van HollenChristopher (Chris) Van HollenThe Hill's Morning Report - Dem dilemma on articles of impeachment Graham, Van Hollen warn Pompeo that 'patience' on Turkey sanctions 'has long expired' Overnight Energy: Protesters plan Black Friday climate strike | 'Father of EPA' dies | Democrats push EPA to abandon methane rollback MORE (D-Md.) tweeted, referencing Stevens’s opposition to a Supreme Court ruling that lifted limits on political donations by corporations.

“The first vote I ever cast for a Supreme Court Justice was for John Paul Stevens, a true champion of the law, of decency, and of equal justice for all. He is already sorely missed,” Sen. Patrick LeahyPatrick Joseph LeahyRepublicans raise concerns over Trump pardoning service members Lawmakers bypass embattled Mulvaney in spending talks Warren bill would revoke Medals of Honor for Wounded Knee massacre MORE (D-Vt.) said in a statement. “I’ll miss my conversations with him and all I learned from him.”

“I’m saddened to learn of the passing of Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens. His impact on our nation with his more than 34 years on the Court was immense. My thoughts and prayers are with his family and loved ones,” Rep. Elijah CummingsElijah Eugene CummingsImpeachment can't wait Adam Schiff's star rises with impeachment hearings Tucker Carlson calls Trump 'full-blown BS artist' in segment defending him from media coverage MORE (D-Md.), the chairman of the House Oversight and Reform Committee, tweeted. 

“John Paul Steven's was a legendary jurist. He was also a father, husband, and war hero who was by all accounts a great man. He lived a rich and long life. May he rest in peace,” Rep. Donna ShalalaDonna Edna ShalalaThree legal scholars say Trump should be impeached; one thinks otherwise Overnight Defense: Trump cancels presser, cuts short NATO trip | Viral video catches leaders appearing to gossip about Trump | Dem witnesses say Trump committed impeachable offenses | Trump reportedly mulling more troops in Middle East Pelosi to Democrats: 'Are you ready?' MORE (D-Fla.) said. 

“RIP, Justice John Paul Stevens. A Navy veteran of WWII, he went on to serve on the Supreme Court for 35 years. He lived a life of public service, and I extend my deepest condolences to his family,” Rep. Steve WomackStephen (Steve) Allen WomackTom Cotton's only Democratic rival quits race in Arkansas Lawmakers dismiss fresh fears of another government shutdown Lawmakers pay tribute to late Justice Stevens MORE (R-Ark.) tweeted. 

Stevens is survived by his two daughters, nine grandchildren and 13 great-grandchildren.