Breyer is a very successful family. Stephen Breyer, the older brother was elected to the First Circuit in his 42nd year. He was then elevated to the Supreme Court at 56 years old. Charles Breyer, Charles Breyer’s younger brother, was appointed to U.S. District Court when he turned 56. This court has been his home for over two decades.
Robert Barnes from the Washington Post asked Judge Charles Breyer to answer questions regarding his brother’s retirement.
Breyer’s retirement reveals a different side to him that is often mentioned when describing his time at the court. He was a pragmatic person.
“I think it’s clear that politics played a role” in his decision to retire, Breyer’s brother Charles, a federal district judge in San Francisco, said Thursday. Breyer is pragmatic. Politics plays an important role. . . That should be taken into consideration.”
Charles Breyer added that this is not all. An inquiry into why an 83 year-old man was appointed to the Supreme Court’s lifetime bench is only possible. ReallyWould like to retire.
Breyer, an 80-year old said that age was a factor. “And he did not want to terminate his service on the court by death — that’s not the exit he wanted.”
It’s a brotherly bond, right?
Justice Breyer maintained that his decision not to retire was not influenced by politics for over a year. His reasoning was, of course, muddled. In August last year, I wrote:
Justice Breyer views his retirement in the same manner as he does his judicial decisions. He approaches it with an indeterminate multi-factor balance test.
And then, behold! The multi-factor balance test suddenly tilts to the left. Breyer retires with a Democratic President, who may lose his Democratic Senate majority at any minute. He also announces his retirement from the White House. He insists, however, that the decision to retire was in part based on politics.
Justice Breyer doesn’t deserve my disapproval. He witnessed what had happened to Justices Scalia and Ginsburg who were still in office. He also knows the fragility of majority in the Senate. The pressure of the Demand Justice group must have been suffocating. He took a pragmatic approach to his decision. It was, however, a pragmatic decision. Judge Breyer said that politics played an important role in the outcome.