Ruth Bader Ginsburg released a moving tribute to her 'best buddy,' Antonin Scalia

Justice Ginsburg Says Scalia Was Her 'Best Buddy'
Justice Ginsburg Says Scalia Was Her 'Best Buddy'

Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg on Sunday released a statement paying tribute to a man she called her "best buddy" — Justice Antonin Scalia, who died suddenly Saturday.

Ginsburg and Scalia had a famous, odd-couple relationship: She is perhaps the court's most liberal justice, while he was a conservative stalwart.

See how people are reacting to Scalia's passing:

But the two often talked about their friendship in interviews. They and their families were known to spend New Year's Eve together. They even rode atop an elephant together during a trip to India.

In her statement, Ginsburg praised Scalia as a "jurist of captivating brilliance and wit, with a rare talent to make even the most sober judge laugh."

Here is her full statement:

Toward the end of the opera Scalia/Ginsburg, tenor Scalia and soprano Ginsburg sing a duet: "We are different, we are one," different in our interpretation of written texts, one in our reverence for the Constitution and the institution we serve. From our years together at the D.C. Circuit, we were best buddies. We disagreed now and then, but when I wrote for the Court and received a Scalia dissent, the opinion ultimately released was notably better than my initial circulation. Justice Scalia nailed all the weak spots—the "applesauce" and "argle bargle"—and gave me just what I needed to strengthen the majority opinion. He was a jurist of captivating brilliance and wit, with a rare talent to make even the most sober judge laugh. The press referred to his "energetic fervor," "astringent intellect," "peppery prose," "acumen," and "affability," all apt descriptions. He was eminently quotable, his pungent opinions so clearly stated that his words never slipped from the reader's grasp.

Justice Scalia once described as the peak of his days on the bench an evening at the Opera Ball when he joined two Washington National Opera tenors at the piano for a medley of songs. He called it the famous Three Tenors performance. He was, indeed, a magnificent performer. It was my great good fortune to have known him as working colleague and treasured friend.

See photos of Justice Scalia:

NOW WATCH: A North Korean defector tells us how she escaped and survived

See Also:

SEE ALSO: 'The most consequential political battle of the last 20 years' has already broken out over Scalia's replacement