September 29, 2023

ACS Statement on Legacy of Senator Feinstein

Nancy Rodriguez,

Washington, DC – The American Constitution Society released the following statement from ACS President Russ Feingold regarding the life and legacy of Senator Dianne Feinstein upon the news of her passing.

“Senator Feinstein was a trailblazer in the U.S. Senate, shattering glass ceilings and helping to advance progressive values during a lifetime dedicated to public service. I am honored to have had the privilege of working alongside her and learning from the example she set for leadership and service to the American people. She demonstrated what it means to be devoted to strengthening our fundamental freedoms, including LGBTQ+ rights and common-sense gun safety, whilst knowing that such pursuits are long and often winding.

ACS is particularly grateful for Senator Feinstein’s historic leadership on the Senate Judiciary Committee, where she served as both the first woman Senator and the first woman Chair on the Committee. Her tenure and leadership on the committee exemplified her commitment to civil rights and understanding of the importance of the courts in our constitutional democracy.

In this time of political turmoil, as our country struggles between the pursuit of a multiracial democracy and the threat of authoritarianism, I think back to my time with Senator Feinstein on the Senate Intelligence Committee and to her stewardship of the Committee’s investigation into the CIA’s use of enhanced interrogation techniques. She insisted then that we demand better from our government, from our democracy. Her leadership of that investigation remains a beacon for fact-driven congressional oversight and responsibility. As we honor her life of service, her advice regarding the standards to which we hold our country could not be more pertinent today.”


The American Constitution Society is a 501(c)3 non-profit, non-partisan legal organization. Through a diverse nationwide network of progressive lawyers, law students, judges, scholars, advocates, and many others, our mission is to support and advocate for laws and legal systems that strengthen our democratic legitimacy, uphold the rule of law, and redress the founding failures of our Constitution and enduring inequities in our laws in pursuit of realized equality. For more information, visit us at or on Twitter @acslaw.