U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, who has died at age 79, emphasized the unique qualities of the U.S. Constitution when he spoke to students in 2008. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).
ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) STORY: U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia who has died at age 79, emphasized the sacred and unique nature of the U.S. Constitution when he talked to students in 2008. In remarks aired on C-SPAN, the Justice said, "Most of our time, I understand, will be devoted to questions, but the price of admission is that I am permitted to say a few things that I want you to know." Scalia offered his thoughts on the Constitution. "When we amend any other legal text, a statute for example, Congress frequently amends statutes, what happens? They strike out the old words, throw them out and put in the new words," he explained. "We don't do that to the Constitution do we?," he said. "We treat it with such respect that we add all the Amendments at the end," he said. "You know, the First Ten Amendments, The Bill of Rights, and then we have revised the manner of selecting the President, we have revised many other matters, but you don't even know about those revisions if you sit down and read it from the beginning," he said. "You'd think we'd still had slavery, until you reach the 13th Amendment, that's a manifestation of the kind of importance that Americans have attached to that document," he said. Appointed to the top U.S. court in 1986 by President Ronald Reagan, Scalia was known for his strident conservative views and theatrical flair in the courtroom, and built a reputation as one of the nation's most brilliant, conservative jurists.