Cameras in the Supreme Court?


At Slate, Dahlia Lithwick argues that Supreme Court Justices Antonin Scalia and Stephen Breyer "unintentionally made the case for putting cameras in the courtroom" by cracking jokes and respectfully debating constitutional interpretation at a joint appearance this week before the Senate Judiciary Committee:

Why don't they do this every week? Why are they hiding this great light under a marble bushel? A new Gallup poll shows that the Supreme Court's approval rating is at a nearly historic low—only 46 percent of respondents approve of the high court, while 40 percent disapprove. That's a 15-point drop from the recent high of 61 percent in 2009. Politico notes that the lowest approval recorded by Gallup was in 2005, at 42 percent.

On the one hand, the justices of the court shouldn't care what the polls say. On the other, they really do. And Wednesday's outing—proving that even ideologically opposed justices can riff about the Constitution, agree about more than they disagree, and call each other "Nino" and "Steve"—can only reassure the American public that there is nothing fearsome, elitist, or threatening about the courts.

Read the whole piece here. Reason.tv makes the case for cameras in the Supreme Court below: