November 01, 2016

The Back Page: The Original Science of the Constitution

Jonathan P. Scoll

Justice Antonin Scalia was uninterested in—indeed, wary of—atmospheric science during the U.S. Supreme Court oral argument in Massachusetts vs. EPA, 549 U.S. 497 (2007). When he mistakenly referred to the stratosphere instead of the troposphere, he curtly waved off a lawyer’s correction: “Troposphere, whatever,” he replied. “I’ve told you before, I’m not a scientist.” As laughter followed, he added, “That’s why I don’t want to have to deal with global warming, to tell you the truth.”

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