Maine political leaders issued statements Friday night on the death of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg:

“Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg was a trailblazer for women’s rights, a fierce champion for equality, and an extremely accomplished American who broke countless barriers in the field of law. Throughout her life, Justice Ginsburg surmounted discrimination and sexism through her brilliance, tenacity, and wit, becoming one of the most prominent legal luminaries of our time.

“I had the great honor of getting to know Justice Ginsburg personally when the women Senators twice had dinner with her and former Justice Sandra Day O’Connor.  She has been a role model to generations of women, and her legacy will live on in the countless people she inspired.”

– Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine

“Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg was a giant. A brilliant jurist, who spent her life making our country a fairer, more equitable place for all its citizens. Her unparalleled mind, her unbending backbone, and her unfailing determination were formidable, making her not only one of the nation’s foremost legal minds but also a cultural icon who inspired countless young Americans to fight for their beliefs. From her Weinberger argument in the 70s to her Lilly Ledbetter decision in the 90s, Justice Ginsburg was the personification of those vital words carved above the Supreme Court: Equal Justice Under the Law.

“Though Justice Ginsburg was a force on the bench who never backed down from her ideals, she also was a warm colleague and friend who built strong relationships across the ideological spectrum – understanding that America is better when cooperation and kindness win out over endless political battles. With less than fifty days until the upcoming election – and an anxious, divided America watching – Senator McConnell should honor Justice Ginsburg’s life and legacy by abiding by her final wish that this vacancy not be filled until the election has been decided.”

– Sen. Angus King, I-Maine

“I had the privilege of meeting Justice Ginsburg when I was Attorney General of Maine, and I had the pleasure of watching people argue before her in the gallery of the highest court in the land. She was a gracious, tenacious person with great intellect who was devoted to the integrity of the Court and to the rule of law as it applies to every person in our country. She was one of greatest Americans ever. On behalf of the people of Maine, I express our deepest gratitude for her service to our nation and our heartfelt condolences to her family during this difficult time.”

– Gov. Janet Mills

“Tonight I join the nation in mourning the loss of a towering pioneer and progressive icon. For nearly 30 years, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg served as a counterpoint on a Supreme Court long dominated by conservative jurists. She was always a reliable voice for the downtrodden and disenfranchised and that’s why her passing feels so devastating to so many Americans. She held the trust of countless women who admired her unwavering defense of reproductive rights and gender equity.

“With less than two months until the election, the Senate should not confirm anyone for this seat until the voters have spoken. Senate Republicans refused to consider President Obama’s nominee for the Supreme Court at the end of his presidency and President Trump should be given the exact same treatment.”

– U.S. Rep. Chellie Pingree, D-1st District

“Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg was a giant for justice, equality, and progress – and my thoughts and prayers are with her family at this difficult time. Throughout her life, Justice Ginsburg fought for women’s rights, reproductive rights, and a more just and fair society. Let us continue that fight in her memory and be inspired by her example for generations to come.”

– Maine House Speaker Sara Gideon, D-Freeport

“This is a terrible loss for our country. Justice Ginsburg devoted her life to justice as an act of service to her fellow Americans. She takes a place among this nation’s revered and accomplished justices, and has been an inspiration for millions fighting for fairness and equality. My prayers are with her family as they grieve her loss.”

– U.S. Rep. Jared Golden, D-2nd District

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