Ruth Bader Ginsburg Undermined 'Integrity of the Supreme Court' by Denouncing Trump

George Washington University Law professor Jonathan Turley slammed Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg for her comments criticizing Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump.

Send in e-mailSend in e-mail

JONATHAN TURLEY, LAW PROFESSOR: They were thoughtless. But more importantly, I think they were facially unethical. Canon 5 of the judicial code says that judges cannot make statements of this kind in opposition to political candidates. Now, the way these justices get around that is they claim that those rules of ethics only apply to lesser jurists. 

This may come as a surprise to most Americans, but the nine justices claim that the rules of ethics cannot be enforced against them, that they look at those rules voluntarily and decide how they will apply to themselves. As you might imagine, the result is that they often are the judges of their own case and find themselves entirely innocent.

[Trump] is right. What she did is not just wrong ethically. It undermines the integrity of the Supreme Court. it's a very serious blow to that court.

The Supreme Court has many flaws, but one of its great tenants is this impartiality and this separation from politics. And what Justice Ginsburg did was undermine that tradition...

Unfortunately, I think many of these justices have become enthralled with what I call the age of the Celebrity Justice. They're increasingly going to audiences. They're enjoying this limelight, and in my view, it's a terrible trend. I prefer the old model where justices spoke entirely through their opinions. But I think you see this sort of corrosive effect on the judgment of justices in this interview. But many of these justices have committed unethical acts in the past. A majority of them have committed acts that would have been serious matters for lower judges. But they consider themselves beyond the rules of ethics, at least in terms of enforceability.