Apr 13, 2022 - Politics & Policy

U.S. to honor first 2 women Supreme Court justices with statues at Capitol

Photo of Ruth Bader Ginsburg in a red button-up shirt and Sandra Day O'Connor in an aqua blazer sitting on stage in a discussion
Ruth Badar Ginsburg (left) and Sandra Day O'Connor, during the Women's Conference in Long Beach, Calif., on Oct. 26, 2010. Photo: Jeff Gritchen/Digital First Media/Orange County Register via Getty Images

President Biden signed into law Wednesday legislation to install statues honoring the first two women to serve on the U.S. Supreme Court, Justices Sandra Day O'Connor and Ruth Bader Ginsburg, on Capitol Hill.

Why it matters: Both women faced significant obstacles and discrimination in their paths to the nation's highest court and helped pave the way for future generations in an institution dominated by men.

  • The bipartisan bill cleared the Senate by unanimous consent in December and passed 349-63 in the House last month.

What they're saying: "We are thrilled that [the president] signed our legislation to honor the legacies of Justices Sandra Day O'Connor & Ruth Bader Ginsburg with statues in their honor on the U.S. Capitol Grounds — it’s an exciting day for children who dream of following in the footsteps of these legal giants," the Democratic Women's Caucus tweeted.

  • "As RBG said, 'women belong in all places where decisions are being made,'" Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), who sponsored the legislation, tweeted. "Now, we'll have two more reminders in the Capitol of how true that is."

The big picture: O'Connor retreated from public life in 2018 after experiencing the beginning stages of dementia. Ginsburg died of cancer in 2020 at age 87.

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