Not one to be easily cowed, Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia on Tuesday night defended the hunting trip he took with Vice President Dick Cheney last month and says he won't recuse himself from hearing a case involving the Veep's secret energy meetings. The trip was hosted at a private game reserve owned by an oil company executive, yet Scalia will hear a case in which Cheney is a defendant because he doesn't want to release information related to his energy policy task force meetings.

An Associated Press story quotes the justice as saying at Amherst College on Tuesday night:

"It did not involve a lawsuit against Dick Cheney as a private individual. This was a government issue. It's acceptable practice to socialize with executive branch officials when there are not personal claims against them. That's all I'm going to say for now. Quack, quack."

Remember: This is one of the finest legal minds who handed the presidency to Bush in 2000.


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