Music and NPR News for Central and Northern Michigan
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00
0:00
Available On Air Stations

Supreme Court Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson gets formal induction before the new term

The Supreme Court held a special sitting on September 30, 2022, for the formal investiture ceremony of Associate Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson. President Biden, First Lady Jill Biden, Vice President Harris, and Second Gentleman Douglas Emhoff attended as guests of the court.
Collection of the Supreme Court of the United States
The Supreme Court held a special sitting on September 30, 2022, for the formal investiture ceremony of Associate Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson. President Biden, First Lady Jill Biden, Vice President Harris, and Second Gentleman Douglas Emhoff attended as guests of the court.

Ahead of the Supreme Court's term beginning next week, Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson participated in her investiture ceremony Friday. Both President Biden, who made a campaign promise to appoint a Black woman to the Supreme Court, and Vice President Harris, attended.

Jackson has already been sworn in as a justice — and made history as the first Black woman to ever serve on the Supreme Court. In June, she took took two oaths: a constitutional oath, administered by Chief Justice John Roberts, and a judicial oath, administered by outgoing Justice Stephen Breyer, whose seat Jackson replaced.

The investiture ceremony is more of a formality, but carries significance given Jackson's historic role. Members of the press are not allowed to record video or audio, but photographs of the event were provided by the court.

Other guests who attended the short ceremony were Jackson's parents, her brother, her husband and two daughters. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi also attended, as well as former House Speaker Paul Ryan, who is related to Jackson through marriage. Some spouses of other Supreme Court Justices were also present, including Ginni Thomas, who was recently questioned by the House committee investigating the Jan. 6 insurrection.

Attorney General Merrick Garland was also present and played a role in the ceremony.

U.S. Supreme Associate Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson waves with her husband, Dr. Patrick Jackson, during a photo opportunity outside the U.S. Supreme Court following an investiture ceremony for Justice Jackson at the court in Washington, U.S., September 30, 2022.
Kevin Lamarque / Reuters
/
Reuters
U.S. Supreme Associate Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson waves with her husband, Dr. Patrick Jackson, outside the Supreme Court following her investiture ceremony at the court on Sept. 30, 2022.

According to the Supreme Court, the ceremony involved Jackson:

escorted by the Clerk of the Court, Scott Harris, to the well of the Courtroom, where she will sit in the same chair used by Chief Justice John Marshall during the early 19th century. The chair has been used for the investiture of every member of the Court since Lewis F. Powell, Jr., took his Judicial Oath in 1972.

Chief Justice John Roberts was to then administer the judicial oath for a second time to Jackson and then Jackson would be escorted to her designated seat on the far right of the court. Once they were seated, the special session of the court would adjourn.

Copyright 2022 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Deepa Shivaram
Deepa Shivaram is a multi-platform political reporter on NPR's Washington Desk.