Chief Justice Rehnquist dies

It has been reported that Chief Justice William Rehnquist has died at the age of 80. There had been speculations as to his retiring on account of thyroid cancer.
Hearings are about to start for Judge John Roberts, nominated by President Bush to replace Sandra Day O’Connor.

See Jurist, Wikipedia

But why was he called William Hubbs Rehnquist when he was born William Donald Rehnquist? Here is a partial answer:

bq. On the bench one day, the chief justice also divulged a long-kept secret. During an oral argument, a question arose about someone’s middle name. Chief Justice Rehnquist scribbled a note to his colleagues and passed it along. He was not born William Hubbs Rehnquist, the name the world knows him by.
“I was once William D. (Donald) until I changed my middle name in high school to H (Hubbs — my grandmother’s maiden name,” he wrote.

(Handakte WebLAWg)

2 thoughts on “Chief Justice Rehnquist dies

  1. This raises the question of whether Bill should have sought legal advice – or did – before changing his middle name and done it by Deed Poll, or whatever the US equivalent is or was. No doubt it is not a compulsory requirement in the US, as it isn’t in the UK.

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