Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg had words of praise Wednesday for her two newest colleagues on the Supreme Court — Justices Brett Kavanaugh and Neil Gorsuch.
Ginsburg was speaking in Washington, D.C., at an event hosted by Duke Law School, according to National Review, which was the first outlet to report her comments.
During a question-and-answer session, Duke Law professor Neil Siegel said that “nominees for the Supreme Court are not chosen primarily anymore for independence, legal ability, [and] personal decency, and I wonder if that’s a loss for all of us.”
The 86-year-old justice, who was nominated for the Supreme Court by former President Bill Clinton, pushed back.
“My two newest colleagues are very decent, very smart individuals,” she said, referring to Gorsuch and Kavanaugh, both of whom were nominated to serve on the court by President Donald Trump.
“The court remains the most collegial place I have ever worked,” said Ginsburg, who expressed disappointment at the now-divisive nature of the Supreme Court confirmation process.
Ginsburg noted that both she, an outspoken liberal feminist, and the late Justice Antonin Scalia, a constitutional originalist, were confirmed with overwhelming Senate support.
“I had a history of being a flaming feminist,” she said.
“I was general counsel for the American Civil Liberties Union.”
The margins of support for Gorsuch and Kavanaugh were much slimmer — 54-45 for the former, 50-48 for the latter.
“My hope is we will return to the way it once was,” Ginsburg said of the confirmation process.
“Nowadays, when people divide into ‘I’ll talk to my own kind, and the others I have nothing to do with,’ that’s very sad because that hasn’t been the way it was and isn’t the way this country should be,” the justice added.
Ginsburg has praised Kavanaugh before, as Fox News noted.
Earlier this month, she pointed out that he had appointed an all-female team of law clerks, the first Supreme Court justice to do so.
“Justice Kavanaugh made history by bringing on board an all-female law clerk crew,” Ginsburg said at an event in New York.
“Thanks to his selections, the court has this term, for the first time ever, more women than men serving as law clerks.”
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