William Rehnquist was a warm, compassionate, decent man; a brilliant jurist; and a chief justice of superb and historic stature.--Justice Anthony M. Kennedy
He steered the court along a path of responsibility and careful analysis ....He led the court with firm principles but with a light touch. He never lost his sense of humor and he was able to secure the cooperation and admiration of all of the justices for the years in which he served.'--Justice Sandra Day O'Connor
...he had outraged Jewish classmates by goose-stepping and heil-Hitlering with brown-shirted friends in front of a dormitory that housed the school’s few Jewish students. He also was infamous for telling racist and anti-Semitic jokes.
...He generally opposed the rights of gays, women, blacks, aliens, and
religious minorities. He was a friend of corporations, polluters, right wing Republicans, religious fundamentalists, homophobes, and other bigots.[emphasis added]
...no opinion comes to mind which will be remembered as brilliant, innovative, or memorable. He will be remembered not for the quality of his opinions but rather for the outcomes decided by his votes, especially Bush v. Gore, in which he accepted an Equal Protection claim that was totally inconsistent with his prior views on that clause.--Alan Dershowitz