What’s wrong with Washington? Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas said on Wednesday that federal institutions are “broken” because of an inability to debate issues with civility, reports USA Today.

Speaking at the Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank, the high court’s only African-American justice said the judicial branch shares some of the blame, along with the legislative and the executive branches.

Thomas said he and his colleagues on the court must do more to earn the public trust.

“What have we done to gain their confidence? Perhaps we should ask ourselves what we have done to not earn it or to earn it,” he stated.

Thomas, a President George H. W. Bush appointee, spoke about the loss of his friend and ideological ally Justice Antonin Scalia, who died in February. The court has become more philosophically balanced, and consequently often reaches an impasse on important cases.

According to Thomas, the remaining members of the court are split on how to interpret the Constitution. He believes in a strict interpretation, which often requires the modification or disregard for legal precedents to comply with the Constitution.

“You’ve got lots of precedents out there that have been changed. I believe we are obligated to rethink things constantly,” said Thomas, who has been on the high court for 25 years.

In his talk, Thomas, who is private and seldom speaks publicly, revealed that he looks forward to spending more time on his 40-foot RV. He and his wife, Virginia, have so far driven to 40 states to meet regular folks.

SOURCE: USA Today | PHOTO CREDIT: Getty, Twitter

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