When President Barack Obama told donors on Monday night to help Democrats because "we're going to have Supreme Court appointments" he may or may not have been talking about his own final years in office.
But he was right that several justices are statistically likely to retire in the coming years. None of them have revealed plans to step down, and if all of them stick around through the end of Obama's term, the 2016 presidential election could lead to a cataclysmic reshaping of the Supreme Court, and with it the country.
As of Election Day in 2016, three of the nine justices will be more than 80 years old. A fourth will be 78.
The average retirement age for a Supreme Court justice is 78.7, according to a 2006 study by the Harvard Journal of Law and Public Policy.
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