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Extraordinary NYT Article

Tomorrow’s New York Times has a very unusual article (via How Appealing) based on on-the-record interviews with Justices Souter and O’Connor, and possibly interviews with others not for attribution. Other information may have come from the family. Here are the facts that I had not previously seen reported or confirmed:

1. “Justice O’Connor said that as the last term proceeded, she had expected the chief justice to arrive at a decision to retire. Hoping to retire herself, she awaited word from him because she did not want to create a second vacancy. Finally, she said, ‘I asked him, and he told me he really wanted to go another year and thought he’d be O.K.'”
2. “While he was receiving nutrition at the end of his life, he was no longer under active cancer treatment because all treatment options had been exhausted.”
3. The Chief Justice did, in fact, have anaplastic thyroid cancer.
4. The Chief did not discuss his health with his colleagues.
5. He did not participate in the traditional morning coffees or lunches of the Justices.
6. “While two brief hospitalizations over the summer became publicly known, there were others in recent weeks that the court did not announce. Justice O’Connor said that when she returned to Washington 10 days ago, she asked the chief justice’s staff to let her know when she might visit him for a few minutes in his chambers, but the call never came.”