This morning, yielding to bipartisan criticism from across the political spectrum, Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg apologized for her attacks on Donald Trump. Her statement was brief:
On reflection, my recent remarks in response to press inquiries were ill-advised and I regret making them. Judges should avoid commenting on a candidate for public office. In the future I will be more circumspect.
Note that Ginsburg apparently couldn’t bring herself to actually apologize to Trump. Her “regret” is expressed more generally. Moreover, her suggestion that “judges should avoid commenting on a candidate for public office” is a watered-down version of Canon 5 of the Code of Conduct for United States Judges, which says in part:
A judge should not:
(2) make speeches for a political organization or candidate, or publicly endorse or oppose a candidate for public office. . .
In fact, Ginsburg’s attacks on Trump were not just “ill-advised,” as she put it, they were flatly inconsistent with Canon 5.
Once again, as we have seen many times over the last year, Trump has inspired such crazed hate in his political opponents that they go too far, ultimately benefiting him. In commenting on Ginsburg’s attacks on him, Trump said “her mind is shot.” That may be putting it too crudely, but there have been serious concerns about Ginsburg’s health for a long time. It is hard to believe that a justice fully in possession of her senses would have exposed her rank partisanship in interviews with the New York Times and CNN, as Ginsburg did.