Photo: Joeff Davis via Flickr
It’s been more than six years since one of the high court’s most conservative justices uttered a word during oral arguments.But Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas reportedly ended his silent streak today when he offered up an opinion about the value of a law degree from Yale.
A Yale degree could mean a lawyer is incompetent, not competent as a capital trial counsel, Thomas argued, according to a paraphrased tweet from SCOTUSblog.
Here’s the full exchange courtesy of oral argument transcripts. From the transcript, it appears that Thomas just uttered a partial sentence in response to Justice Antonin Scalia. However, it’s possible the transcriber didn’t capture the entire exchange:
Thomas spoke during arguments in Boyer v. Louisiana, which is a death penalty case, according to SCOTUSblog.
Twitter users were shocked that the mute justice finally spoke.
“@SCOTUSblog Wait, he said something?
#endofdays,” @NOWChicago tweeted.
The last words Thomas spoke during oral arguments came in 2006 during Holmes v. South Carolina, when he grilled an attorney about the state’s refusal to allow a convicted man to enter evidence at his trial that another person was guilty.
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