WASHINGTON – Conservative Justice Brett Kavanaugh said the Supreme Court is not as divided as the public might think, praised his liberal colleagues and highlighted rulings where justices were not divided along ideological lines during a recent public appearance.

His comments during an event at Notre Dame Law School earlier this week, a video which was made public on Thursday, amid an ongoing debate over whether the court, which has a 6-3 Conservative majority, is in danger of losing its legitimacy by moving sharply to the right.

The court in its previous term, which ended in June, faced heavy criticism for several rulings, most notably the decision to strike down the landmark Roe v. Wade Act of 1973 which determined that there was a constitutional right to abortion.

“There are excellent relationships between the nine judges, both on a personal and professional level. We only receive difficult cases and we disagree on some of them. I think that’s more nuanced than sometimes comes along,” he said.

Kavanaugh gave particular praise to the late Liberal Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, recently retired Liberal Justice Stephen Breyer and Breyer’s successor, Liberal Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson, saying she has «started to work» and is «fully prepared.»

Ginsburg and Breyer «could not have been better at welcoming me to the court,» Kavanaugh said, referring to her nomination by then-President Donald Trump in 2018. She joined the court after barely surviving a process of Senate confirmation in which he faced charges. of sexual misconduct dating back decades, all of which he denied. a new documentary film is reviewing the allegations.

This week, Kavanaugh seemed eager to counter any perception that the court is generally divided along ideological lines, pointing to several cases in which he sided with liberal justices in 5-4 decisions.

One was a ruling last year in favor of the Biden administration in its efforts to undo Trump’s immigration policy. He also cited two 5-4 decisions written by liberal Justice Sonia Sotomayor, including one in a Criminal case where the three Liberals were joined by Conservative Justices Clarence Thomas and Neil Gorsuch in the majority.

«That’s not following a typical perceived lineup,» Kavanaugh said.

Statistics compiled for the legal website SCOTUSblog showed, however, that in the previous injunction only 29 percent of decisions were unanimous, less than at any time in the past two decades. Of the 66 cases, 14 resulted in 6-3 decisions along ideological lines.

The court is hearing more hot-button disputes this term, including a case that could end the use of racial bias in college admissions and two major election-related disputes that could impact the 2024 presidential race.

The court issued its first ruling this term in an argued case on Monday, more than a month behind its normal schedule.

Kavanaugh played down the delay, saying at Notre Dame that the court was «on track» and will issue all its rulings in time for the end of June.