As I wrote in this post yesterday, today, August 31, 2016, is the last set of oral arguments to be heard by Justices Paul Pfeifer and Judy Lanzinger, who cannot run for re-election because of the age limits in the Ohio Constitution. So I tuned in at 9:00 am this morning, suspecting the Chief might say something, and she most graciously did, wishing both well in their retirements (although expressing doubts that either would just quietly disappear.)
Justice Pfeifer took the moment to tell lawyers that oral argument is very important to the court, and makes the job interesting and fun. He thanked the lawyers who advocate before the court, and encouraged lawyers to try and have this experience. He noted that each time there is a change in the court’s membership, the dynamic of the court changes. I agree–that is an intangible factor perhaps least known to the voting public.
Justice Lanzinger also thanked the lawyers for the give and take before the court, and noted that as a judge for 31 years, she was currently serving in the most splendid venue she had ever worked in, and grateful to have had the best job in the state of Ohio.
As Justice Lanzinger noted, and as I noted in yesterday’s post, there is much work still to be done until her term and Justice Pfeifer’s term end at year’s end. All cases currently under submission must be decided before they leave the court.
You can hear Chief Justice O’Connor’s remarks and Justices Pfeifer’s and Lanzinger’s responses in the first few minutes of this argument. To the Chief’s thanks I add my own, to two wonderfully balanced, compassionate, dedicated jurists.
Randy Ludlow wrote a very nice article in the Columbus Dispatch about this last day of oral arguments for the two justices. Read that here.