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Early Morning Swim: Glenn Greenwald Discusses Justice Scalia’s Closed Meeting with Tea Party Caucus on Lawrence O’Donnell

Glenn is shrill. Meanwhile, looks like we won’t get another “You lie!” moment from Alito tonight.

Scholars and historians say Tuesday’s State of the Union address poses another test for the court and its commitment to the appearance of independence and impartiality. Some justices are expected to skip the annual event, having expressed reservations about attending what Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. has called a “political pep rally.”

That leaves the possibility that only the liberal justices will attend, thereby creating a visual symbol of a court divided along partisan and ideological lines.

“That would be very unfortunate,” said Stanford law professor Michael McConnell. “Anything that accentuates there are Democratic or Republican justices is not good for the court. It would be fine if none of them went, or all of them went. But if only the Democratic appointees go, it would look like the court is divided and partisan.”

Look like?

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