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Ruth Bader Ginsburg, 85, Hospitalized After Taking Fall

Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. (Wake University School of Law / Flickr)

WASHINGTON — Eighty-five-year-old Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg fractured three ribs in a fall in her office at the Supreme Court and is in the hospital, the court said Thursday.

The court’s oldest justice fell Wednesday evening, the court said. She went to George Washington University Hospital in Washington early Thursday after experiencing discomfort overnight.

She was admitted to the hospital for treatment and observation after tests showed she fractured three ribs.

In her absence, the court was going ahead Thursday with a courtroom ceremony welcoming new Justice Brett Kavanaugh, who joined the court last month. President Donald Trump and new acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker were expected to attend.

Ginsburg has had a series of health problems. She broke two ribs in a fall in 2012. She has had two prior bouts with cancer and had a stent implanted to open a blocked artery in 2014. She also was hospitalized after a bad reaction to medicine in 2009.

Appointed by President Bill Clinton in 1993, Ginsburg rebuffed suggestions from some liberals that she should step down in the first two years of President Barack Obama’s second term, when Democrats also controlled the Senate and would have been likely to confirm her successor.

She already has hired clerks for the term that extends into 2020, indicating she has no plans to retire.

Ginsburg leads the court’s liberal wing.

MARK SHERMAN / The Associated Press

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