Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett gave a short lesson on why all nine justices wear black robes after Sen. Ben Sasse quizzed her on the matter during the second day of her confirmation hearing.
Supreme Court justices once wore robes expressing the colors of the schools from which they graduated, but the practice changed in 1801, when Chief Justice John Marshall joined the court, Barrett explained.
“In the beginning, justices used to wear colorful robes that identified them with the schools they graduated from,” Barrett said. “John Marshall, at his investiture, decided to wear a simple, black robe. Now, all judges do it.”
Barrett told the Senate Judiciary Committee she believes that the black robes signify the belief on the high court that justice is blind.
“We all dress the same, and it shows that once we put it on, we are standing united, symbolically speaking, in the name of the law and not speaking for