Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg is under fire from those who are offended that she once again fell asleep at President Obama’s State of the Union address and from conservatives who say she should recuse herself and refrain from ruling on an upcoming LGBT rights case.
It was quite obvious that Justice Ginsburg was fast asleep at the most recent State of the Union address. She told Rachel Maddow that a “little wine” with dinner was to blame, and she had stayed up all night the previous evening writing; “My pen was hot.”
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When it was noted that Justice Ginsburg nodded off at the State of the Union address in 2010, she said then she had Justice David Souter to give her a pinch, but “Now my colleagues –I think they are more reluctant. I have Justice Breyer on one side and Justice Kennedy on the other. They gave me a little jab, but that was not enough, ” as reported by Politico. When the 81 year old Supreme Court Justice, who has been asked to step down by some Democrats so President Obama can nominate a liberal justice while he is still in office, was asked about her health, she said “I’m fine, ” and apparently has no plans to retire soon.
Conservatives think that Supreme Court Justices Ginsburg and Elena Kagan, both of whom have participated in same-sex marriage ceremonies, should recuse themselves and refrain from participating in a ruling that could potentially make same sex marriage constitutional. The right wing group, the National Organization for Marriage was adamant that Ginsburg not participate in the ruling after she made a public statement that it “would not take a large adjustment” for most Americans to accept same-sex marriage, with 55% in a poll saying they were in favor of making it legal, according to MSNBC.
However, critics point out that Justice Clarence Thomas’ allowing himself to be photographed with traditional marriage activists and Antonin Scalia’s wife’s participation in conservative causes did not result in calls for them to recuse themselves in marriage equality and abortion rights cases.