Justices worry about the future of the Supreme Court -- and point fingers as to who's to blame
According to a new Marquette Law School poll , 61% of the public disapproves of how the court is handling its job.
But their joint appearance could not dim the tensions on the high court and the sentiment that its institutional integrity is under threat.
At a separate appearance in Atlanta, Thomas suggested that the leak was a symptom of an effort to destabilize the court.
Chief Justice John Roberts expressed his own concerns about the future of the court and its legitimacy.
In Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health -- the case that overturned Roe -- Roberts said that his conservative colleagues had gone too far.
"The way the court retains its legitimacy and fosters public confidence is by acting like a court," Kagan said in stressing the need to respect precedent.
The liberals in the joint dissent in the Dobbs case made the same exact point when the court overturned Roe.
They said that the court had overturned Roe "for one reason and one reason only: because the composition of this court has changed."
In Montana, Kagan also said that the justices on the court -- both conservatives and liberals -- should stick to the "consistent application of methodologies that constrain and discipline judges."
She spoke about methodologies embraced by the current court called "originalism" and "textualism" -- doctrines championed by the late Justice Antonin Scalia.
"So you can't be a textualist on Monday" she said, and then abandon the doctrine in a future case.
"The current Court," Kagan said, is "textualist only when being so suits it."