WASHINGTON - Chief Justice John Roberts on Wednesday criticized as “inappropriate" and “dangerous" comments that Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer made outside the Supreme Court earlier in the day about Justices Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh.
Roberts was responding to Schumer's remarks at a rally outside the court while a high-profile abortion case was being argued inside. “You have released the whirlwind, and you will pay the price. You will not know what hit you if you go forward with these awful decisions,” Schumer said, naming the two appointees of President Donald Trump, according to video of the rally available online.
It was not clear exactly what the New York Democrat meant.
But Roberts, who in 2018 rebuked Trump for the president's criticism of an “Obama judge," jumped to his colleagues' defense. “Justices know that criticism comes with the territory, but threatening statements of this sort from the highest levels of government are not only inappropriate, they are dangerous," Roberts said in a statement.
The chief justice remained quiet in recent weeks when Trump questioned the impartiality of Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Sonia Sotomayor.