[Ed. – So much for Notorious RBG.]
Ruth Bader Ginsburg is a revered Supreme Court justice who spent her early legal career fighting for women’s rights. But one justice gave her original performance before the high court only passing marks.
“Prof. Ruth Ginsburg. C-plus,” Justice Harry Blackmun wrote on loose-leaf paper during her first Supreme Court argument, Frontiero v. Laird, in January 1973. “Very precise. Female. Reads.”
Perhaps alone among his colleagues, Justice Blackmun made detailed assessments of Supreme Court advocates, grading them like law students and often noting their hometowns, law schools and even their ethnicities. Several of those attorneys later joined the Supreme Court.
One was Antonin Scalia. “Plump. Dark,” Justice Blackmun wrote, as the future jurist, then a Justice Department attorney, argued his only Supreme Court case, a January 1976 dispute involving Cuban cigar factories seized by the Castro regime. He got a grade of 85, equal to a B.