The Associated Press referred to Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg as ‘Notorious RBG’ –without the quotation marks — on Wednesday in reporting on the latest turn in her spat with presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump.
Donald Trump wants Notorious RBG to resign from Supreme Court for criticizing him as unfit to be president: https://t.co/rGKOWUCDVc
— AP Politics (@AP_Politics) July 13, 2016
The article, by the AP’s Vivian Salama, explains: “It is highly unusual for a sitting justice to weigh in so publicly on a political campaign, though Ginsburg is known for speaking her mind on other issues and is celebrated as a liberal icon known to fans as Notorious RBG.”
The nickname, a play on “Notorious B.I.G,” the stage name of the late rapper Christopher George Latore Wallace, is a sign that while some in the liberal media establishment understand that Ginsburg’s aggressive entry into the political fray is a threat to the impartiality of the judiciary, others are enjoying the spectacle and quietly cheering on the Court’s liberal stalwart.
Ginsburg has a political connection to the race. She was appointed by Hillary Clinton’s husband, then-President Bill Clinton, in 1993. The name “Notorious RBG” was also used last year in a biography by Irin Carmon and Shana Knizhnik.”
In an unusual moment of agreement with Republicans, the New York Times editorial board opined Wednesday that Donald Trump was right to rebuke Ginsberg’s comments as inappropriate. The board wrote: “Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg needs to drop the political punditry and the name-calling … Washington is more than partisan enough without the spectacle of a Supreme Court justice flinging herself into the mosh pit.” (The Times printed its editorial before Trump added, via Twitter on Wednesday morning, that Ginsburg should resign over her “very dumb statements” and that “Her mind is shot.”)
Update: The Associated Press has responded to an inquiry by Breitbart News: “The tweet was playing off a nickname that has gained traction, and on reflection we should have made clear we were using a nickname,” said Paul Colford, Vice President and Director of Media Relations for the AP.
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News. His new book, See No Evil: 19 Hard Truths the Left Can’t Handle, will be published by Regnery on July 25 and is available for pre-order through Amazon. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.