How much longer for Stevens?

Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens has hired fewer law clerks than usual, generating speculation that the leader of the court’s liberals will retire next year.

In response to a question from The Associated Press, Stevens confirmed through a court spokeswoman Tuesday that he has hired only one clerk for the term that begins in October 2010. He is among several justices who typically have hired all four clerks for the following year by now. Information about this advance hiring is not released by the court but is regularly published by some legal blogs.

This is pretty good evidence that Stevens will retire in the next year or two. It will be sad to see him go.

I hope progressives put up a huge fight if Obama nominates anyone other than a true liberal to fill this position. Many 5-4 decisions would shift to the conservative wing of the court if another moderate such as Sotomayor is seated.

This seems like weird speculation to me… are the clerks hired to work in different months or something?

It will indeed be sad to see him retire, he’s been a bastion. And agree, Obama had damned well nominate a very loud very left replacement.