Thousands of mourners have gathered at vigils across America to pay their respects to Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who died Friday after a battle with pancreatic cancer sparking a bitter war between Republicans and Democrats over her Supreme Court replacement.
Americans paid their respects to the legal pioneer and champion of women’s rights at candlelight vigils and memorials stretching all corners of the country on Sunday evening, from the steps of the Supreme Court where she made history as only the second woman to serve as Supreme Court Justice to the school in Brooklyn, New York she attended as a girl.
Donations to the Democrats have topped $100 million in the days after her death, as the party demands the Trump administration sticks to the standard it set back in 2016 that a vacant Supreme Court seat must not be filled until after the election.
Tensions continue to mount along partisan lines with Donald Trump and Mitch McConnell vowing to rush through a justice appointment while Democrats – and some dissenting Republicans – have blasted the move hypocritical and vowed to take unprecedented steps to derail their plans.
MAINE: The late US Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg is mourned during a vigil in Monument Square in Portland
IOWA: A family light candles at a vigil in Poppajohn Sculpture Park in Des Moines where about 200 people gathered in honor of Ginsburg Sunday night
WASHINGTON: Flowers, candles, cards and American flags are seen adorning a memorial at the Supreme Court
MINNEAPOLIS: Hundreds gathered on the grass to honor Ginsberg at a memorial event Sunday night
OHIO: Cuyahoga County judges are seen listening to speakers during a candlelight vigil outside the old Cuyahga County Courthouse
Vigils sprung up across states including Maine, Washington, Minneapolis, Iowa, New York and Ohio Sunday night as thousands of Americans gathered to mourn the loss of Ginsburg, who served 27 years on the highest court of the land.
Many donned COVID-19 face masks sporting Ginsburg’s picture or with the word ‘vote’ emblazoned across them.
Hundreds flocked to a vigil in Monument Square in Portland, Maine, where people lit candles and laid them next to a large sketch of the judge.
Ginsburg’s image was projected onto the side of a building as night fell, alongside her nickname the ‘Notorious RBG’ while young children held up banners reading ‘We won’t let you down’ and ‘Rest in power RBG’.
In Washington, flowers, candles, cards and American flags adorned a memorial at the Supreme Court.
Meanwhile, around 200 people gathered in honor of Ginsburg at a vigil in Poppajohn Sculpture Park in Des Moines where families lit candles in commemoration of the judge.
Over in Minneapolis, hundreds were seen sitting in a grassy area where they had gathered to honor Ginsberg at a memorial event.
The event began with a man blowing a shofar – the ram’s horn that is traditionally part of the Jewish High Holiday services – to honor Ginsberg while her initials were lit up in lights.
MAINE: Mourners lit candles while Ginsburg’s image was projected onto the side of a building alongside her nickname the ‘Notorious RBG’
MAINE: Hundreds gathered in Monument Square in Portland to pay tribute to the legal pioneer Sunday night
MAINE: One mourner wears a face mask with the word ‘vote’ across it as thousands come out across America to pay their respects to the late judge
MAINE: Mourners including children held up banners with slogans including ‘We won’t let you down’ and ‘Rest in power RBG’
MAINE: Thousands of mourners have gathered at vigils across America to pay their respects to Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg
A candlelight vigil was also held outside the old Cuyahga County Courthouse in Ohio where the state’s judges gathered and listened to speakers talking about a pioneer of their profession.
Judge Yvette McGee Brown, the first female African American Ohio Supreme Court Justice to be elected after taking office in 2011, spoke at the memorial event.
At a memorial in downtown Atlanta, people held up banners honoring Ginsburg with one reading ‘Until your last breath you fought for us. Now we will carry forward your legacy. Thank you RBG’.
Hundreds also attended a vigil in front of the US Courthouse in New York to remember one of their own.
The hour-long event was put together by Indivisible Westchester, a local grass roots organization, and clergy from the Jewish, Christian and Muslim faiths spoke at the event for the Brooklyn native.
Ginsburg’s dying wish was that ‘I will not be replaced until a new president is installed’ – a wish many feel must be honored
Democratic fundraising site ActBlue said donations had been flooding in since news broke of Ginsburg’s death Friday
Democratic fundraising site ActBlue said donations had been flooding in since news broke of Ginsburg’s death Friday.
The non-profit tweeted that, in a little over 24 hours, more than $100 million in small-dollar donations poured in.
‘Small-dollar donors have now given $100 million on ActBlue since 8 p.m. ET Friday, investing in candidates up and down the ballot and orgs on the front lines of the impending judicial confirmation fight,’ ActBlue tweeted Sunday morning.
‘The grassroots is ready to fight to honor Justice Ginsburg’s legacy.’
Ginsburg’s dying wish was that ‘I will not be replaced until a new president is installed’ – a wish many feel must be honored.
WASHINGTON: People lay tributes to honor the judge, who died Friday after a battle with pancreatic cancer
IOWA: A woman wearing her COVID-19 face mask at a vigil for Ginsburg in Poppajohn Sculpture Park
IOWA: A woman holds up a candle in honor of RBG, whose death has sparked a bitter war between Republicans and Democrats over her Supreme Court replacement
IOWA: Americans paid their respects to the legal pioneer and champion of women’s rights at candlelight vigils and memorials stretching all corners of the country on Sunday evening
IOWA: Des Moines residents gathered Sunday to honor Ginsburg who was the second woman nominated to the highest court in the land
Trump vowed to plow ahead with his Supreme Court nomination Saturday and urged the GOP-run Senate to consider it ‘without delay’.
The move comes just six weeks before the election and has sparked fierce debate, with many Democrats – as well as some Republicans – insisting the seat must not be filled until after the election.
The crux of the debate centers around the move made by Republicans back in 2016 – and led by McConnell – to block then-President Barack Obama from appointing a new justice to the court nine months before the election.
Justice Antonin Scalia died in February 2016 and Obama planned to appoint Merrick Garland to fill the position on the court.
Republicans refused to hold hearings or vote on a replacement until after a new president took office with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell saying: ‘the American people should have a voice in the selection of their next Supreme Court Justice.
OHIO: Mourners hold up candles, flowers and a picture of RBG as they await speakers at a vigil in Cleveland
OHIO: Tensions continue to mount along partisan lines with Donald Trump and Mitch McConnell vowing to rush through a justice appointment following RBG’s death
OHIO: Yvette McGee Brown speaks during a candlelight vigil for Ginsburg outside the old Cuyahga County Courthouse. Brown was the first female African American Ohio Supreme Court Justice to be elected, taking office in 2011
OHIO: Justice Ginsburg died Friday night, which was the eve of Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish new year
‘Therefore, this vacancy should not be filled until we have a new president.’
The seat was not filled and two weeks after taking office Trump appointed his own choice Neil Gorsuch to the court instead.
Democrats argue Republicans set a standard in 2016 by preventing an appointment during an election year and so now the shoe is on the other foot the same standard must now be honored.
However, McConnell issued a statement Friday after news of Ginsburg’s death broke backtracking on his stance in 2016, saying Trump’s nominee would be voted for by the Senate.
MINNEAPOLIS: People pick up electric votive candles from a table before a memorial service
MINNEAPOLIS: People pick up electric candles at a vigil while Democrats – and some dissenting Republicans – blast Trump and McConnell as hypocritical and vow to take action to derail their plans to rush through a justice appointment
MINNEAPOLIS: A man blows a shofar to hono Ginsberg at the beginning of a memorial service where her initials are lit up in lights
GEORGIA: A woman holds up a banner reading ‘Until your last breath you fought for us. Now we will carry forward your legacy. Thank you RBG’ at a vigil in downtown Atlanta
GEORGIA: Democrats are demanding Ginsburg not be replaced until after the election and a new president sworn in
NEW YORK: Hundreds of local residents attended a vigil to remember Ginsburg in her native New York
NEW YORK: The vigil in Ginsburg’s birth state took place in front of the US Courthouse and was put together by Indivisible Westchester, a local grass roots organization
NEW YORK: Clergy from the Jewish, Christian and Muslim faiths spoke during an hour long vigil in New York state
NEW YORK: Mourners of all ages gathered at the vigil that included music and the blowing of a shofar, the rams horn that is traditionally part of the Jewish High Holiday services
‘President Trump’s nominee will receive a vote on the floor of the Unites States senate,’ he said.
Democrats have also pointed to there being more fraught timing with today’s nomination than in 2016.
In 2016, the position was empty nine months before the election, while Ginsburg’s death comes just six weeks before the nation’s votes are counted and a president revealed.
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer on Sunday said the nation was ‘in an election’ rather than close to an election this time as early voting is already under way in Virginia.
‘People are already voting – it’s just a few days away. We are not close to an election. We are in an election,’ he said.
‘To try and decide this at this late moment is despicable and wrong and against democracy.’
Democrats have put several options forward to stall or counteract Trump rushing through the appointment for Ginsburg’s replacement, with several threatening to pack the Supreme Court while others have suggested pursuing impeachment charges.
Four GOP senators need to join the Democrats to stop a Supreme Court nomination going forward.
Two GOP senators – Lisa Murkowski and Susan Collins – have already dissented, vowing to derail Trump’s nomination plans until after the November 3 election.