Antonin Scalia, Associate Justice for the U.S. Supreme Court, was found dead of apparent natural causes on Saturday, February 13. He had been visiting a luxury resort in Marfa, Texas, according to federal officials. Scalia was 79.
The late SCOTUS Justice was a guest at the Cibolo Creek Ranch. He arrived there on Friday and attended a party with about 40 people. Someone checked on Scalia when he didn’t show up for breakfast the next morning. His body was found in his room.
“I was told it was this morning,” U.S. District Judge Fred Biery said of Scalia’s death. “It happened on a ranch out near Marfa. As far as the details, I think it’s pretty vague right now as to how,” he continued. “My reaction is it’s very unfortunate. It’s unfortunate with any death, and politically in the presidential cycle we’re in, my educated guess is nothing will happen before the next president is elected.”
Texas Governor Greg Abbott released a statement on Saturday afternoon. In it, he called Scalia an “unwavering defender of the written Constitution.”
“He was the solid rock who turned away so many attempts to depart from and distort the Constitution,” Abbott said. “We mourn his passing, and we pray that his successor on the Supreme Court will take his place as a champion for the written Constitution and the Rule of Law. Cecilia and I extend our deepest condolences to his family, and we will keep them in our thoughts and prayers.”
Reverb Press reports the political ramifications of Scalia’s death:
“With Scalia gone, the GOP’s new reason for existence will be to break the Supreme Court in an effort to break the Obama White House. They will attempt to use this to make political hay for the 2016 election for far right candidates to attack the government in order to deregulate business more and strip workers of their rights even more.”
You may also enjoy these related stories from our archives:
SCOTUS Racing to Declare Same-Sex Marriage Constitutional
Same-Sex Marriage De-Facto Legal after U.S. Supreme Court Ruling