Matter of Fact Newsletter

Retired Justice Stephen Breyer talks about life after the bench

Retired Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer

Justice Breyer announced he was retiring from the Supreme Court in 2022. He left the bench with a message: the Constitution should be viewed as workable. He goes into more detail in his new book “Reading the Constitution: Why I Chose Pragmatism, Not Textualism.” He stopped by our studio to discuss his book and the future of the Supreme Court with Special Correspondent Joie Chen.

Another boom on the way?

As our dependence on cellphones and electric cars grows, so does the need for lithium. That’s the mineral used in the batteries that power those devices. Lithium mining is picking up in parts of the U.S. including in rural Southwest Arkansas. Some of the state sits on a geological formation knows as the “Smackover Formation.” Some of the communities there once thrived during the upturn of the oil and gas industry. Now, many are wondering whether lithium can bring another economic boom, while others are concerned about the environmental impact. Correspondent Jessica Gomez has the story.

Congestion Pricing Concerns

Starting in June, New York City plans to tax drivers traveling in and out of Manhattan to curb traffic jams. The only issue is drivers, especially commercial truck drivers, looking to avoid those fees could cut through the South Bronx. Residents there are concerned that the constant flow of trucks will bring even more air pollution to the area. As part of our series in partnership with, Soledad talks to local leaders and families pushing back against congestion pricing.

Watch Soledad’s previous report about asthma rates among children in the South Bronx here.

We’re also talking about…

There’s a mass effort underway to digitize millions of records at all federal agencies. The deadline is at the end of June. We’ll break down what workers are trying to complete.

Breast cancer among women in their 40s increased by 2% annually from 2015 to 2019. Treatment includes chemotherapy which is known for causing hair loss. One woman knows that struggle first-hand and has now set up a unique community where wigs are exchanged between cancer survivors. We’ll show you how the EBeauty Community works.

See when and where you can watch “Matter of Fact with Soledad O’Brien.”