Justice Ginsburg Will Not Attend Trump’s State Of The Union Address

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Kevin Daley Supreme Court correspondent
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Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg will not attend President Donald Trump’s State of the Union on Tuesday given a prior commitment.

The justice is scheduled to give remarks at Roger Williams University School of Law in Providence, R.I., with Judge Bruce Selya of the 1st Circuit Court of Appeals.

Ginsburg also missed Trump’s first address to Congress shortly after his inauguration. The pair met briefly at the White House when Justice Neil Gorsuch took the oath of office in the Rose Garden in April 2017.

Trump and Ginsburg have never concealed their distaste for one another. The justice denounced Trump’s candidacy in a spate of interviews in 2016, prompting the president to call for her resignation.

Mutual enmity notwithstanding, it is not unusual for a justice to skip the State of the Union address, though Ginsburg was present at the event during former President Barack Obama’s tenure. Justices Clarence Thomas and Samuel Alito have not attended in recent years.

Chief Justice John Roberts has previously acknowledged that the justice’s attendance at the address — an explicitly political event — is somewhat incongruous.

“It does cause me to think whether or not it makes sense for us to be there,” Roberts said at the University of Alabama in 2010. “To the extent the State of the Union has degenerated into a political pep rally, I’m not sure why we’re there.”

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