More than a month after falling and fracturing three ribs, Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg declared Saturday night in New York that she is “almost repaired.”
The 85-year-old justice told an audience that “immediately” after the fall she returned to her physical trainer, but they did “legs only.”
“Yesterday,” she said however, “we did the whole routine.”
News of the fall caused her legion of fans, and liberals across the country, to hold their collective breaths, fearful for the health of the so called “Notorious RBG” who has reached celebrity status, as well as the future of the court. They feared a worsening of her health could give President Donald Trump the opportunity to replace a liberal justice with a conservative.
Instead, Ginsburg never missed a day of arguments and nine days later she was at the White House for a ceremony to honor her late friend Justice Antonin Scalia. She was even hugged by her longtime friend Republican Sen. Orrin Hatch.
The President acknowledged her presence that day by saying, “Glad to see you are feeling great.” Later she attended the funeral of President George H.W. Bush.
Ginsburg survived bouts with colon cancer in 1999 and pancreatic cancer in 2009 as well as a coronary catheterization procedure in 2014. On the bench, she shows no signs of slowing down, often opening argument sessions with the first question. She also released the first opinion this term.
She does look frail at times and moves slowly, the last to leave the bench, but the frailty dissipates when she asks questions or crafts her dissents.
Saturday, Ginsburg was appearing at an event hosted by the Museum of the City of New York and was interviewed by NPR’s Nina Totenberg.
Totenberg asked whether — after living in Washington for so many years — she still considered herself a New Yorker.
“Not only a New Yorker, but a Brooklynite,” she said.
In recent years she’s emerged as a pop icon, traveling often and carrying a bag emblazoned with the words “I dissent,” reflecting her status as the leader of the court’s four-member liberal minority.
She’s been the subject of a documentary produced by CNN, and is now featured in a Hollywood movie called “On the Basis of Sex,” based on her early career as a lawyer fighting gender discrimination. Actress Felicity Jones plays Ginsburg. Her late husband, Marty Ginsburg, is played by Armie Hammer.
When Totenberg asked her about an apparently steamy sex scene in the movie, she responded, “Marty would have loved it.”