On the latest Capitol Report, Pat McGuigan and reporter Alex Cameron discussed the death of U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia. McGuigan reflected that the process of justice is a human one, not always explained easily with familiar political labels. He recalled running to Ash Wednesday Mass on Capitol Hill in the late 1980’s.
Almost late, McGuigan watched silently outside St. Joseph’s Church as Antonin Scalia, then in his early years on the nation’s High Court, helped Justice William Brennan up the church steps. The CapitolBeatOK editor pointed to the effusive praise Scalia received from colleagues after his death, including from his interpretive opposite, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.
Turning then to President Obama’s announced intention to nominate Scalia’s successor, McGuigan remembered a U.S. Senator who said in the mid-1980s that Robert H. Bork was so qualified that “I’d have to support him” if the conservative was appointed to the Supreme Court. When Bork was in fact nominated in 1987, that Senator announced that confirming Bork would effect “the balance of the Court,” and had to be opposed. That Senator is now Vice President Joe Biden.
At the end of the segment, Cameron asked McGuigan to translate the words at the foot of an autographed picture from Scalia. McGuigan explained the photo is signed “To Pat McGuigan,” and reads, in Latin, ” ‘Qui ipsos custodiet custodes.’ That translates: ‘He who guards the guardians.'” Capitol Report is broadcast every weekend, usually on Saturday’s on News9, the CBS News affiliate in Oklahoma City.