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Antonin Scalia, Justice on the Supreme Court, dies at 79

After three decades on the Supreme Court, Antonin Scalia died on Saturday, Feb. 13 at 79 years old. President Ronald Reagan nominated Scalia to the U.S. Supreme Court in 1986.

Scalia passed away in his sleep of natural causes at the Cibolo Creek Ranch, a resort in the Big Bend region where he was staying as a guest. Scalia arrived at the ranch on Friday to attend a private party. When he didn’t appear for breakfast, a person involved with the hotel was sent to his room to then discover Scalia had passed away.

Since Scalia’s death, many wonder who will be taking his place in the Supreme Court — especially since the justices are set to make decisions on Fisher v. University of Texas at Austin, which challenges the university’s affirmative action policy. Plus, the court will be reviewing a case that contests Obama’s immigration policy and another that reexamines the meaning of “one person, one vote,” said former U.S. Rep. Charlie Gonzalez to the San Antonio Express-News, this summer.

The death immediately became an issue during the GOP debate on Feb. 13, where five of the six candidates urged Republicans to block any attempt by the president to get his third nominee on the court. Only Jeb Bush argued that President Obama has every right to nominate a justice during his final year in office.  

Obama received news of Scalia’s passing on Feb. 13 and, then, announced his intention to nominate a new justice before his term ends.

Scalia leaves behind his wife, nine children and several grandchildren.  

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