iBostonHerald. reported Justice Clarence Thomas sat through 68 hours of oral arguments in the Supreme Court’s current term without uttering a word.
Maybe he reads the pleadings from the two sides, and can understand what they are saying, and does not need them to explain it to him... Thomas has said in the past that he will ask a pertinent question if his colleagues don’t but sees no need to engage in the back-and-forth just to hear his own voice. A recent tally by McClatchy Newspapers underscored this point: Thomas has spoken 281 words since court transcripts began identifying justices by name in October 2004. By contrast, Thomas’ neighbor on the bench, Justice Stephen Breyer, has uttered nearly 35,000 words since January.
He must like to hear himself talk. Either that or he does not understand what the lawyers write in their briefs.