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Justice Felix Franfurter to Retire, JFK to Appoint Arthur Goldberg to Vacancy

Aug. 29, 1962 - Felix Frankfurter (pictured in 1939) has retired from active service on the Supreme Court after 23 years as an associate justice. President Kennedy made the announcement at his news conference today and said he would appoint Arthur J. Goldberg, Secretary of Labor, to the vacancy. Justice Frankfurter, who is 79, has been away from the court since he suffered a mild stroke last April 5. He had hoped to return when the new term opens Oct. 1, but concluded that this would be medically unwise. Mr. Goldberg, 54, will bring to the bench a long background as a leading labor lawyer. He will be the fourth Jewish person to sit on the Supreme Court. The others have been Justice Frankfurter and Justices Louis D. Brandeis and Benjamin N. Cardozo. The President praised Justice Frankfurter for his impact on the court and termed Mr. Goldberg “superbly qualified” as a successor. Reaction on Capitol Hill indicated that confirmation of Mr. Goldberg would be forthcoming. Leaders of both parties expressed satisfaction with Mr. Kennedy’s choice.

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