Sandra Day O'Connor: Justice in the Balance

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UNM Press, Mar 15, 2006 - Biography & Autobiography - 232 pages

On July 1, 1981, President Ronald Reagan interviewed Sandra Day O'Connor as a candidate for the United States Supreme Court. A few days later, he called her. "Sandra, I'd like to announce your nomination to the Court tomorrow. Is that all right with you?" Scared and wondering if this was a mistake, the little-known judge from Arizona was on her way to becoming the first woman justice and one of the most powerful women in the nation.

Born in El Paso, Texas, O'Connor grew up on the Lazy B, a cattle ranch that spanned the Arizona-New Mexico border. There she learned lifelong lessons about self-reliance, hard work, and the joy of the outdoors.

Ann Carey McFeatters sketches O'Connor's formative years there and at Stanford University and her inability to find a job--law firms had no interest in hiring a woman lawyer. McFeatters writes about how O'Connor juggled marriage, a career in law and politics, three sons, breast cancer, and the demands of fame.

In this second volume in the Women's Biography Series, we learn how O'Connor became the Court's most important vote on such issues as abortion, affirmative action, the death penalty, the role of religion in society, and the election of a president, decisions that shaped a generation of Americans.

 

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Contents

The Right Woman at the Right Time
1
A Girl of the West
22
No Women Need Apply
41
Shall We Call You Madam Justice?
61
Behind Closed Doors
82
Party Animal
100
The A Word
114
Capital Controversy
134
No Dearth of Opinions
157
And the Winner Is
175
Icon
190
Epilogue
211
Bibliography
219
Index
221
Back Cover
225
Copyright

Affirming America
144

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About the author (2006)

Ann Carey McFeatters is Washington Bureau Chief for the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and The Toledo Blade and writes a weekly column about the White House for Scripps Howard News Service.

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