Stevens’ departure will not change the court’s conservative-liberal
split because Obama is certain to name a liberal-leaning replacement.
But the new justice is not likely to be able to match Stevens’ ability
to marshal narrow majorities in big cases.
Stevens was able to draw the support of the court’s, now-retired and , to rein in or block some ,
including the detention of suspected terrorists following the Sept. 11,
2001, attacks, its tilt toward protecting businesses from some lawsuits
and its refusal to act against global warming.
But after the arrival of Roberts and, ‘s appointees, Stevens more often was among the four liberal justices in dissent.