Rev. Mark H. Creech
'Juiced-up' justice is no funny matter
By Rev. Mark H. Creech
February 14, 2015

When President Obama gave his State of the Union Speech this year, sitting on the front row were the U.S. Supreme Court Justices, as usual, but Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg was strangely slumped over. Was she sick? Was she put to sleep by the President's speech?

Was she just too tired from a hard day?

No, it turns out she was a bit inebriated. Uh huh, that's right. According to her own testimony in a recent interview hosted at George Washington University and moderated by NPR's Nina Totenberg, she was drunk.

Speaking of that night, Ginsburg said, "The audience – for the most part – is awake because they're bobbing up and down all the time and we sit their stone faced, sober judges. At least I wasn't 100% sober because before we went to the State of the Union we had dinner." [1]

She said Justice Anthony Kennedy brought wine with him. "[I]t was an Opus something or other, very fine wine that Justice Kennedy brought," she said, "and I vowed this year just sparkling water, stay away from wine. But in the end, the dinner was so delicious it needed wine to accompany it." [2]

And that's not all. The Washington Post reported in 2013, Justice Ginsburg said a "very good California wine that Tony Kennedy brought" was the same reason she dozed during the President's State of the Union speech in 2012. [3]

Of course, when Ginsburg admitted she suffered from too much to drink the night of the President's speech, the audience attending the interview erupted in laughter. Moreover, most of the news articles that covered her confession have done so with much levity.

It's not funny! A Supreme Court justice so juiced-up she's passed out while representing the nation's highest court in our nation's capital, in the presence of Congress, before the President of the United States, televised in front of a national audience, is nothing to laugh about. It's shameful!

But to be fair, apparently this disgrace is not exclusive to Justice Ginsburg. Congress seems to have alcohol issues. In 2009, while making his flawed case for the legalization of marijuana on CNN's Larry King Live, Ron Paul attributed "current laws to a widespread fear of political retribution in Congress, among many members who 'drink a lot of alcohol' at that." [4] When host Joy Behar asked Paul if he was saying there were a lot of alcoholics in Congress? "Paul backpedaled. 'I said there's a lot of people in Congress who drink a lot of alcohol.'" [5]

That assertion by Paul is evidently true and lawmakers, as well as their staff, are not just drinking on personal time, but also on the job.

The online news site NW Daily Marker broke the story in December of 2011 that three aids were fired by Rep. Rick Larson, a Washington State Democrat, who learned his office had "been the setting of a staffers-gone-wild bash, a binge of embarrassing behavior" – evidently Larson's legislative aids spent much of their time boozing it up in the office. [6]

In 2013, the Huffington Post reported that Capitol Hill boozing had become a trend. Only hours before a government shutdown, "Congressman couldn't seem to agree on much except the fact that drinks were in order." Reporters were tweeting they could smell alcohol on the lawmakers working to strike a last minute deal. [7] Rep. Alan Grayson (D) charged Republican House members were literally intoxicated "while casting votes on the continuing resolutions that set the stage" for the government shutdown. [8] But Democrats did plenty of boozing themselves in 2010 when Obamacare passed in the House, "much of it at the Tune Inn, a drive bar just blocks from the Capitol, but plenty of it inside the building as well." [9]

The incongruity of this is policemen can't drink while on duty. Physicians are not allowed to drink while on duty. Numerous companies prohibit their employees from drinking during work or even showing up under the influence of alcohol. Drinking on the job or suffering from intoxication during work will get you fired in many places, if not most. Yet, a U.S. Supreme Court Justice nodding off from too much wine while attending one of the nation's most significant annual events precipitates a lighthearted and flippant response?

How is it that someone of such incredible responsibility as Ginsburg – someone who is supposed to inspire faith in the national judiciary – an individual who serves as the legal conscience of a people – is held to a much lower standard than many of the nation's average citizens?

The same could be legitimately asked of Congress and its staffers.

Is it any wonder with such poor role models underage drinking is epidemic? If the nation's highest leaders, its supposedly most responsible citizens, won't demonstrate proper discipline in drinking, how can we expect the nations' youth to listen to admonishments to abstain from alcohol until they turn 21? No one can spot hypocrisy better than a teenager.

The Scriptures proclaim that kings and priests are not to drink lest they pervert justice. Proverbs 31:4, 5 read, "It is not for kings, O Lemuel, it is not for kings to drink wine; nor for princes strong drink: Lest they drink, and forget the law, and pervert the judgment of any of the afflicted." These words are not a prescription for kings or political leaders to drink moderately. Instead they contend that their positions are of such gravity, they shouldn't drink in any amount.

Spare this author the angry emails, telephone calls, or other contacts that essentially say he needs to lighten-up. No, it's true! America needs more and deserves better than a wine-drunk, liquored-up, leadership. It's not funny and it shouldn't be acceptable.


[1],[2] Hunter, Derek. "Justice Ginsburg Was Drunk At State Of The Union." N.p., n.d. Web. 14 Feb. 2015.

[3] "Slumping Supreme Court Justice Ginsberg Admits to Being Drunk During State of Union Address." Christian News Network. N.p., 13 Feb. 2015. Web. 14 Feb. 2015.

[4], [5] " Forums." • View Topic. N.p., n.d. Web. 14 Feb. 2015.

[6] "Congressional Aides Fired For Tweeting About On-Job Drinking And More." NPR. NPR, n.d. Web. 14 Feb. 2015.

[7] Lavender, Paige. "Congressmen Still Boozing As Government Shuts Down." The Huffington Post., n.d. Web. 14 Feb. 2015.

[8] "Grayson Blames Shutdown on GOP Literally Drinking on the Job." Saloncom RSS. N.p., n.d. Web. 14 Feb. 2015.

[9] Lavender, Paige. "Congressmen Still Boozing As Government Shuts Down." The Huffington Post., n.d. Web. 14 Feb. 2015.

© Rev. Mark H. Creech


The views expressed by RenewAmerica columnists are their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of RenewAmerica or its affiliates.
(See RenewAmerica's publishing standards.)

Click to enlarge

Rev. Mark H. Creech

Rev. Mark H. Creech is Executive Director of the Christian Action League of North Carolina, Inc. He was a pastor for twenty years before taking this position, having served five different Southern Baptist churches in North Carolina and one Independent Baptist in upstate New York.

Rev. Creech is a prolific speaker and writer, and has served as a radio commentator for Christians In Action, a daily program featuring Rev. Creech's commentary on social issues from a Christian worldview.

In addition to, his weekly editorials are featured on the Christian Action League website and Agape Press, a national Christian newswire.


Receive future articles by Rev. Mark H. Creech: Click here

More by this author

May 20, 2024
Billy Graham’s statue in the Capitol: What does it mean for the country?

May 10, 2024
Pillars of society: Reclaiming traditional motherhood in modern times

May 6, 2024
Navigating faith and civic responsibility: Pastor Loran Livingston’s controversial sermon

April 28, 2024
Beware the leaven of progressive clergy

April 20, 2024
Scriptural sobriety: Rethinking wine in the Lord’s Supper

April 15, 2024
Scriptural sobriety: Challenging assumptions about Jesus’ wine miracle

April 6, 2024
The dwindling flame: Exploring the decline of church attendance in America

March 30, 2024
Revelation Chapter 22: Yearning at life’s window, awaiting the Savior’s return

March 24, 2024
Revelation Chapter 22: Eternal recompense

March 16, 2024
Revelation Chapter 22: Getting beyond doubt, Billy Graham’s example

More articles


Stephen Stone
HAPPY EASTER: A message to all who love our country and want to help save it

Stephen Stone
The most egregious lies Evan McMullin and the media have told about Sen. Mike Lee

Siena Hoefling
Protect the Children: Update with VIDEO

Stephen Stone
FLASHBACK to 2020: Dems' fake claim that Trump and Utah congressional hopeful Burgess Owens want 'renewed nuclear testing' blows up when examined

Jerry Newcombe
Electoral College dropout?

Curtis Dahlgren
The "Hand of History" writes its own reply to arrogance

Pete Riehm
Our fallen fought not just for freedom but truth

Linda Kimball
Christendom and Protestant America’s apostasy into paganism: A timeline

Jim Wagner
Why the Left loves Allah

Randy Engel
A Documentary: Opus Dei and the Knights of Columbus – The anatomy of a takeover bid, Part V

Peter Lemiska
For Democrats, justice is a one-way street

Rev. Mark H. Creech
Billy Graham’s statue in the Capitol: What does it mean for the country?

Linda Goudsmit
CHAPTER 19: From sex education to sexuality education

Cliff Kincaid
Press Conference on America's 'Reefer Madness'

Jerry Newcombe
Throwing Israel under the bus

Pete Riehm
Leftist accusations are latent confessions
  More columns


Click for full cartoon
More cartoons


Matt C. Abbott
Chris Adamo
Russ J. Alan
Bonnie Alba
Chuck Baldwin
Kevin J. Banet
J. Matt Barber
Fr. Tom Bartolomeo
. . .
[See more]

Sister sites