- The Washington Times - Sunday, April 4, 2010

WASHINGTON (AP) — A leading Democratic senator hopes Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens doesn’t decide to retire this year.

Sen. Arlen Specter, Pennsylvania Democrat, worries that a nomination fight this year would mean gridlock in the partisan Senate. Mr. Specter thinks there’s a better chance for consensus next year.

The 89-year-old Justice Stevens said he “will surely” step down during President Obama’s term and will decide soon whether it’s this year or next.

RELATED STORY: Justice Stevens hints at retirement

Mr. Specter told “Fox News Sunday” he hopes Mr. Obama would pick someone who would be a check on executive power, as he said Justice Stevens has been.

Sen. Jon Kyl, Arizona Republican, isn’t ruling out a GOP filibuster.

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