Speculation is starting to simmer that Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens is about to retire. The speculation is caused by the fact that Justice Stevens has hired fewer law clerks than usual. Court observers believe that this may be the first sign that he is about to retire. The same thing happened earlier this year when Justice David Souter retired. Just before his announcement, court observers were stating that his lack of hiring law clerks was a sign that he was going to retire. Justice Stevens is 89 years old. He joined the court in 1975 when he was appointed by Republican President Gerald Ford. He is generally considered to be the most liberal justice on the court He has served 33 years and 8 months on the court, the seventh longest serving justice in history. He is the second oldest Supreme Court Justice behind Oliver Wendell Holmes. If he retires, it would give President Barack Obama his second appointment to the Supreme Court.
Court observers note that by this time of the year, Justice Stevens would normally have hired 4 law clerks. However, he has only hired 1. Former law clerks of Justice Stevens say that he ordinarily hires all his law clerks at one time. Justice Stevens has refused to say whether he intends to resign. We will keep an eye out for any developments.
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