Gins­burg in hospi­tal for pos­si­ble in­fec­tion

As­so­ciate jus­tice likely to stay for few days

USA TODAY US Edition - - NEWS - Richard Wolf

WASH­ING­TON – Supreme Court As­so­ciate Jus­tice Ruth Bader Gins­burg was ad­mit­ted to a hospi­tal Tues­day for treatment of a pos­si­ble in­fec­tion, mark­ing the lat­est med­i­cal is­sue for the four-time can­cer sur­vivor.

Gins­burg, 87, the court's old­est jus­tice, ex­pe­ri­enced fever and chills Mon­day night and was treated at Si­b­ley Me­mo­rial Hospi­tal in the na­tion's cap­i­tal. On Tues­day, she un­der­went an en­do­scopic pro­ce­dure at Johns Hop­kins Hospi­tal in Bal­ti­more to clean out a bile duct stent that was in­serted last Au­gust, the court an­nounced.

The an­nounce­ment said Gins­burg would re­main at Johns Hop­kins for a few days for in­tra­venous an­tibi­otic treatment but was "rest­ing com­fort­ably."

Gins­burg's health has been the sub­ject of con­ster­na­tion among court­watch­ers for years, and more so as Pres­i­dent Donald Trump's first term draws to a close. If she was forced to leave the court dur­ing his ad­min­is­tra­tion, the Repub­li­can-con­trolled Se­nate could try to re­place her quickly and so­lid­ify the court's con­ser­va­tive ma­jor­ity, per­haps for decades to come.

At a late af­ter­noon press con­fer­ence, Trump said, "I wish her the best. She’s ac­tu­ally giv­ing me some good rul­ings."

Gins­burg has had sev­eral health scares dat­ing back to 1999, in­clud­ing col­orec­tal, pan­cre­atic and lung can­cer. Her lung can­cer was di­ag­nosed in De­cem­ber 2018, and she had a sec­ond bout of pan­cre­atic can­cer last Au­gust.

Still, she has kept up with the court's work.

The court has a 5-4 con­ser­va­tive ma­jor­ity that could be ex­panded if she were to be re­placed by a Repub­li­can pres­i­dent and Se­nate. If Democrats win the White House or the Se­nate in Novem­ber, that would change the equa­tion.


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