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Away From Home

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

The Rehnquist viewing

With the unfortunate passing of Chief Justice Rehnquist (looks like Pat Buchanan got what he wanted), some of us decided that we should pay our respects to a man who, although I didn't always agree with, I respected for his commitment to the Court and to an independent judiciary.

We headed over to the Court last night at 8:00. Each of us had class until then, and we figured it'd be a nice time to go, without so many people.

Someday I'll learn that the phrase "without so many people" does not apply in DC.

The line to get in was down the steps, out to the street, down to the corner, across the street, and clear along the next block. We quickly wondered whether it was a bad idea to come, but we stood in line anyway.

Surprisingly enough, the line moved fairly quickly, and within an hour were at the steps, waiting to go in. We overheard some people behind us talking about how "They're showing this on C-SPAN! We're going to be on TV!"

Oh yeah. I was on national television. You're so jealous.

Inside, the casket was laid on the Lincoln Catafalque, in the center of the Great Hall, draped with the flag. People signed the condolence book, and then walked around the sides of the room, past the busts of all of the Chief Justices.

I wonder if Rehnquist has a bust already? I didn't look. Does anybody know?

All in all, I'm glad I went, even though I'm 100% sick of death. It's a historic occasion.


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