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Rehnquist to lie in repose at Supreme Court as Stevens takes charge

[JURIST] The US Supreme Court announced Sunday evening that the body of late Chief Justice William Rehnquist, who died Saturday [JURIST report], will lie in repose in the Great Hall [photo] of the court on Tuesday, September 6, from 10:30 AM ET to 10 PM ET, and then again Wednesday, September 7, from 10 AM ET to Noon. A funeral service for family and friends will be held Wednesday at 2 PM ET St. Matthew's Cathedral in Washington [official website], with a private interment afterwards at Arlington National Cemetary [official website] in Virginia. The last Chief Justice to lie in repose at the Court was Chief Justice Warren Burger, who died in 1996. AP has more.

With Rehnquist's death the leadership of the court falls by seniority to 85-year old justice John Paul Stevens, a more liberal Ford appointee who may well be in charge whwn the new Court term starts in October, although if that is the case court tradition dictates that he remain in his own seat next to the Chief's chair, which would be empty and draped in black. Stevens took over some of Rehnquist's duties when the Chief Justice was undergoing cancer treatment late last year. This summer he has been rather active on the speaking circuit, publicly calling two major rulings from the Court's 2004 term "unwise" [JURIST report] and criticizing the current US death penalty system [JURIST report]. AP has more.

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