WASHINGTON (Reuters) – US President Donald Trump was booed on Thursday when he attended the funeral of Supreme Court Judge Ruth Bader Ginsburg outside the country’s Supreme Court in front of a crowd met to honor the liberal judge.
Trump, wearing a black face mask and accompanied by First Lady, Melania Trump, stood near the coffin amid boos and cries of “vote against him”. The moment highlighted the critical point of Ginsburg’s death before the November 3 presidential election.
The Republican president, who has already appointed two people to the Supreme Court since taking office in 2017, has said he will reveal his last choice on Saturday, a week after the 87-year-old judge died on September 18.
The decision to move quickly with a replacement less than two months before the election drew clear lines between Republicans and Democrats, as well as reshaping the race as Trump seeks re-election during a coronavirus pandemic that killed more than 200,000 people in the United States and devastated the economy.
Ginsburg, appointed by Democratic President Bill Clinton in 1993, was an icon for liberals, especially as the court has become increasingly conservative. His death sparked a new drive by Democrats to get people to the polls in November and a high volume of campaign donations.
Before the 2016 election that made Trump president, Ginsburg publicly criticized him, calling him a “scammer” in an interview. In response, Trump tweeted “his head doesn’t work well”, referring to the lawyer. She later apologized, saying she regretted the “reckless” comments.
Trump has drawn criticism in recent days for not honoring Ginsburg’s last wish, allegedly dictated in a statement to the judge’s granddaughter, that only the next president could choose a replacement.
(By Jeff Mason and Susan Heavey)