WASHINGTON — Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg was admitted to Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore on Friday night after experiencing chills and fever earlier in the day, a Supreme Court spokeswoman said on Saturday.
Justice Ginsburg was initially evaluated at Sibley Memorial Hospital in Washington before being transferred to Johns Hopkins for further evaluation and treatment of any possible infection, the spokeswoman, Kathleen Arberg, said in a statement.
Justice Ginsburg’s symptoms abated after treatment with intravenous antibiotics and fluids, Ms. Arberg said, adding the justice expected to be released from the hospital as early as Sunday morning.
Justice Ginsburg, 86, has had a series of health scares lately, including surgery for lung cancer and radiation treatment for pancreatic cancer in the last year. Over the years, Justice Ginsburg has also had surgery for early-stage pancreatic cancer in 2009 and treatment for colon cancer in 1999.
She missed oral arguments on Nov. 13, which she seldom does, because of what Ms. Arberg said was a stomach bug.
Justice Ginsburg is the senior member of the court’s four-member liberal wing. She has repeatedly vowed to stay on the court as long as her health holds and she stays mentally sharp.
President Trump has appointed two members of the Supreme Court, Justices Neil M. Gorsuch and Brett M. Kavanaugh. The last president to appoint more than two justices in his first term was Richard M. Nixon, who put four on the court from 1969 to 1972. Those appointments spelled the end of the liberal court that had been led by Chief Justice Earl Warren and created a conservative majority that remains to this day.
The current court is closely divided, with five Republican appointees and four Democratic ones. A third Trump appointee would not only make the balance more lopsided but would also almost certainly move the court’s ideological center to the right.
Justice Ginsburg was named to the court in 1993 by President Bill Clinton. She was the first Democratic appointment since 1967, when President Lyndon B. Johnson nominated Thurgood Marshall.
Justice Ginsburg was born in Brooklyn in 1933, graduated from Cornell in 1954 and began law school at Harvard. After moving to New York with her husband, she transferred to Columbia, where she earned her law degree.
She taught at Columbia and Rutgers and was a leading courtroom advocate of women’s rights before joining the court. As director of the Women’s Rights Project of the American Civil Liberties Union in the 1970s, she brought a series of cases before the court that helped establish constitutional protections against sex discrimination.
Her litigation strategy invited comparison to that of Justice Marshall, who was the architect of the civil rights movement’s incremental legal attack on racial discrimination before he joined the court.
During the Obama administration, some liberals urged Justice Ginsburg to step down so that President Barack Obama could name her successor. She rejected the advice.
“I think it’s going to be another Democratic president,” Justice Ginsburg told The Washington Post in 2013. “The Democrats do fine in presidential elections; their problem is they can’t get out the vote in the midterm elections.”
President Trump, whose election proved her wrong, has been critical of Justice Ginsburg, saying in 2016 that “her mind is shot” and suggesting that she resign. His sharp words came after Justice Ginsburg criticized Mr. Trump in a series of interviews. She later said she had made a mistake in publicly commenting on a candidate and promised to be more “circumspect” in the future.