Watch CBS News

Justice Clarence Thomas absent from Supreme Court arguments Monday with no reason given

Supreme Court arguments on Jan. 6 cases
Supreme Court to hear obstruction law arguments in Trump, Jan. 6 rioter cases 05:05

Washington — Justice Clarence Thomas did not attend oral arguments at the Supreme Court on Monday, and no reason was given for his absence.

As the justices convened to hear arguments in two cases, Chief Justice John Roberts announced that Thomas would not be taking the bench but would "participate fully," based on the briefs and transcripts from the proceedings. No further information about Thomas was given.

At 75 years of age, Thomas is the oldest member of the court and its longest-serving current justice, having joined the Supreme Court in 1991. He missed several days of arguments in March 2022, spending a week in the hospital after being admitted with an infection.

Justices have in the past missed oral arguments but still participate in cases based on the briefs filed and transcripts. Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg was absent from six days of arguments while she recovered from lung cancer surgery in late 2018, which marked her first time missing the proceedings in 25 years.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.