DC-area leaders react to death of Ruth Bader Ginsburg

U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi makes the sign of the cross after pausing outside the U.S. Supreme Court where flowers, signs and chalk messages on the sidewalk have been left in tribute to the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. (WTOP/Kate Ryan)

U.S. Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi stops to view the tributes to the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg at the Supreme Court Sunday morning. (WTOP/Kate Ryan)

People gather at the Supreme Court on the morning after the death of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, 87, one of the high court's liberal justices, and a champion of gender equality, in Washington, Saturday, Sept. 19, 2020. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
Two people walk past the Supreme Court on the morning after the death of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, 87, one of the high court’s liberal justices, and a champion of gender equality, on Saturday, Sept. 19, 2020. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

Cardboard signs and flowers
Cardboard signs and flowers blanket the Supreme Court’s grounds on Saturday, Sept. 19, 2020, in tribute to the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. The 87-year-old died Friday of metastatic pancreatic cancer after 27 years on the court. (WTOP/Melissa Howell)

Two people embrace in front of Supreme Court
Two people embrace in front of the Supreme Court on the morning after the death of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, a champion of gender equality, on Saturday, Sept. 19, 2020. (WTOP/Melissa Howell)

Person with flowers
This person leaves flowers on the Supreme Court’s grounds on Saturday, Sept. 19, 2020, in tribute to the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. (WTOP/Melissa Howell)

Cardboard signs and flowers
Some of the many cardboard signs and flowers blanketing the Supreme Court’s grounds on Saturday, Sept. 19, 2020, in tribute to the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. (WTOP/Melissa Howell)

Cardboard signs and image of the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg
One of the many tributes blanketing the Supreme Court’s grounds on Saturday, Sept. 19, 2020, in honor of the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. (WTOP/Melissa Howell)

Cardboard signs and flowers
Many cardboard signs and flowers blanket the Supreme Court’s grounds on Saturday, Sept. 19, 2020, in tribute to the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. (WTOP/Melissa Howell)

cardboard signs and flowers, with people in the background
People are seen on the Supreme Court’s grounds on Saturday, Sept. 19, 2020, paying tribute to the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, as cardboard signs and flowers blanket the area. (WTOP/Melissa Howell)

cardboard signs and flowers, with people standing
More people are seen on the Supreme Court’s grounds on Saturday, Sept. 19, 2020, paying tribute to the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. (WTOP/Melissa Howell)

Cardboard signs and flowers
Cardboard signs and flowers blanket the Supreme Court’s grounds on Saturday, Sept. 19, 2020, in tribute to the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. The 87-year-old died Friday of metastatic pancreatic cancer after 27 years on the court. (WTOP/Melissa Howell)

The American flag blows in the wind after it was lowered to half-staff Friday, Sept. 18, 2020, in Washington, after the Supreme Court announced that Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has died of metastatic pancreatic cancer at age 87. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
The American flag blows in the wind after it was lowered to half-staff on Friday, Sept. 18, 2020, at the Supreme Court. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

A couple pauses outside the Supreme Court Friday, Sept. 18, 2020, in Washington, after the Supreme Court announced that Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has died of metastatic pancreatic cancer at age 87. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
A couple pauses outside the Supreme Court on Friday, Sept. 18, 2020. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

Flowers and light candies outside the Supreme Court Friday, Sept. 18, 2020, in Washington, after the Supreme Court announced that Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg died of metastatic pancreatic cancer at age 87. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
Flowers and light candies outside the Supreme Court on Friday, Sept. 18, 2020, after the Supreme Court announced that Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg died of metastatic pancreatic cancer at age 87. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

overhead shot of light candies
This is an overhead shot of light candies positioned to spell “RBG” outside the Supreme Court on Friday, Sept. 18, 2020, after the Supreme Court announced that Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg died of metastatic pancreatic cancer at age 87. (WTOP/Alejandro Alvarez)

Flowers and mourners crowd the steps outside the Supreme Court on Friday, Sept. 18, 2020, in tribute to the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. (WTOP/Alejandro Alvarez)

People gather at the Supreme Court Friday, Sept. 18, 2020, in Washington, after the Supreme Court announced that Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg died of metastatic pancreatic cancer at age 87. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
People gather at the Supreme Court on Friday, Sept. 18, 2020, outside the Supreme Court after it announced that Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg died of metastatic pancreatic cancer at age 87. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

People gather at the Supreme Court Friday, Sept. 18, 2020, in Washington, after the Supreme Court announced that Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has died of metastatic pancreatic cancer at age 87. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
A crowd of people gather at the Supreme Court on Friday, Sept. 18, 2020, after the Supreme Court announced that Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has died of metastatic pancreatic cancer at age 87. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

A demonstrator at right argues with people gathered at the Supreme Court to mourn the death of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Friday, Sept. 18, 2020, in Washington. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
A demonstrator at right argues with people gathered at the Supreme Court to mourn the death of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg on Friday, Sept. 18, 2020. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

People gather at the Supreme Court Friday, Sept. 18, 2020, in Washington, after the Supreme Court announced that Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has died of metastatic pancreatic cancer at age 87. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
People gather at the Supreme Court Friday, Sept. 18, 2020, in Washington, after the Supreme Court announced that Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has died of metastatic pancreatic cancer at age 87. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

People light candies outside the Supreme Court Friday, Sept. 18, 2020, in Washington, after the Supreme Court announced that Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg died of metastatic pancreatic cancer at age 87. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
One of the large cardboard signs people left outside the Supreme Court on Friday, Sept. 18, 2020, in tribute to the late Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

People lay flowers and light candies outside the Supreme Court Friday, Sept. 18, 2020, in Washington, after the Supreme Court announced that Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg died of metastatic pancreatic cancer at age 87. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
Mourners gather at the Supreme Court on Friday, Sept. 18, 2020, after the Supreme Court announced that Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg died of metastatic pancreatic cancer at age 87. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

People gather at the Supreme Court Friday, Sept. 18, 2020, in Washington, after the Supreme Court announced that Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has died of metastatic pancreatic cancer at age 87. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
Another view of people who gathered at the Supreme Court on Friday, Sept. 18, 2020, after the Supreme Court announced that Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has died of metastatic pancreatic cancer at age 87. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

People gather at the Supreme Court Friday, Sept. 18, 2020, in Washington, after the Supreme Court announced that Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has died of metastatic pancreatic cancer at age 87. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
People gather at the Supreme Court Friday, Sept. 18, 2020, in Washington, after the Supreme Court announced that Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has died of metastatic pancreatic cancer at age 87. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

The flag at the White House flies at half-staff Friday, Sept. 18, 2020, in Washington, after the Supreme Court announced that Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has died of metastatic pancreatic cancer at age 87. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
The flag at the White House flies at half-staff on Friday, Sept. 18, 2020, after the Supreme Court announced that Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has died of metastatic pancreatic cancer at age 87. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

Ginsburg Memorial
A crowd shot of the hundreds of mourners who converged on the U.S. Supreme Court on Friday, Sept. 18, 2020, for Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s memorial. (WTOP/Dave Dildine)

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People gather at the Supreme Court on the morning after the death of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, 87, one of the high court's liberal justices, and a champion of gender equality, in Washington, Saturday, Sept. 19, 2020. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
Cardboard signs and flowers
Two people embrace in front of Supreme Court
Person with flowers
Cardboard signs and flowers
Cardboard signs and image of the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg
Cardboard signs and flowers
cardboard signs and flowers, with people in the background
cardboard signs and flowers, with people standing
Cardboard signs and flowers
The American flag blows in the wind after it was lowered to half-staff Friday, Sept. 18, 2020, in Washington, after the Supreme Court announced that Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has died of metastatic pancreatic cancer at age 87. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
A couple pauses outside the Supreme Court Friday, Sept. 18, 2020, in Washington, after the Supreme Court announced that Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has died of metastatic pancreatic cancer at age 87. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
Flowers and light candies outside the Supreme Court Friday, Sept. 18, 2020, in Washington, after the Supreme Court announced that Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg died of metastatic pancreatic cancer at age 87. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
overhead shot of light candies
People gather at the Supreme Court Friday, Sept. 18, 2020, in Washington, after the Supreme Court announced that Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg died of metastatic pancreatic cancer at age 87. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
People gather at the Supreme Court Friday, Sept. 18, 2020, in Washington, after the Supreme Court announced that Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has died of metastatic pancreatic cancer at age 87. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
A demonstrator at right argues with people gathered at the Supreme Court to mourn the death of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Friday, Sept. 18, 2020, in Washington. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
People gather at the Supreme Court Friday, Sept. 18, 2020, in Washington, after the Supreme Court announced that Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has died of metastatic pancreatic cancer at age 87. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
People light candies outside the Supreme Court Friday, Sept. 18, 2020, in Washington, after the Supreme Court announced that Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg died of metastatic pancreatic cancer at age 87. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
People lay flowers and light candies outside the Supreme Court Friday, Sept. 18, 2020, in Washington, after the Supreme Court announced that Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg died of metastatic pancreatic cancer at age 87. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
People gather at the Supreme Court Friday, Sept. 18, 2020, in Washington, after the Supreme Court announced that Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has died of metastatic pancreatic cancer at age 87. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
People gather at the Supreme Court Friday, Sept. 18, 2020, in Washington, after the Supreme Court announced that Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has died of metastatic pancreatic cancer at age 87. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
The flag at the White House flies at half-staff Friday, Sept. 18, 2020, in Washington, after the Supreme Court announced that Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has died of metastatic pancreatic cancer at age 87. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
Ginsburg Memorial
The death of 87-year-old Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg sent shock waves through the political community Friday night.

The court announced Ginsburg died at her D.C. home surrounded by friends and family, after a battle with metastatic pancreas cancer.

Appointed to the Supreme Court in 1993, Ginsburg was just the second woman to hold a seat on the court and she served more than 27 years.

Area legislators, educators, local government officials and other leaders from around the region offered their condolences shortly after the announcement, calling the pioneering figure “a giant,” “the fiercest of trailblazers,” and “a visionary for justice.”

“For me as a woman lawyer, I know that she paved the way for women like me to enter the field of law,” Rep. Jennifer Wexton, D-Va., who represents part of Northern Virginia, told WTOP.

“It’s because of the sacrifices that she made and the barriers that she broke down, at a time that law schools grudgingly admitted just a few women and law firms would hire them. But by the time I went to law school in the early 1990s, half of my class was made up of women,” said Wexton.

Wexton said Ginsburg “has been a huge influence on so many women lawyers. But not just on us, but on women and girls across the country.”


Read more about Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s life and the impact her death is having:

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