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Sen. Judiciary Committee Investigates 2nd Potential SCOTUS Leak

    Sen. Judiciary Committee Investigates 2nd Potential SCOTUS Leak
    Last updated: 1 week ago
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    Facts

    • Following a New York Times report published over the weekend, the Senate Judiciary Committee announced that it intends to investigate a potential leak of the 2014 Burwell v. Hobby Lobby SCOTUS decision to anti-abortion activists. [1]
    • According to the report, Rev. Rob Schenck, an evangelical minister and leader of the Faith and Action group, alleged that Justice Samuel Alito prematurely revealed the court’s decision to activist Gayle Wright over a dinner. Wright was one of several members of Schenck’s group who attempted to gain close access to conservative justices for lobbying purposes. [1]
    • Alito, who wrote the decision, has denied the accusation as “completely false.” [2]
    • Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, said that the committee is looking into the leak allegations, which allowed corporations to refuse to pay for contraception, as required by the Affordable Care Act, based on religious reasons. [1]
    • This comes as the Court’s marshal is also investigating the leak this year of the Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization majority opinion, which overturned the federal right to abortion as established by Roe v. Wade. That opinion was also written by Alito. [3]
    • Unlike other federal judges, SCOTUS justices aren't bound by a written code of ethics. Some in Congress are calling for the creation of one. [3]
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    Spin

    Republican narrative

    Everyone who was reportedly involved in this leak has denied it, and there are many holes in Schenck’s story. Plus he’s a flip-flopper who once opposed abortion, but now believes it should be left up to individuals. Schenck isn’t credible, and neither is this serious accusation.

    Democratic narrative

    Even if Alito didn’t leak the Hobby Lobby decision, the fact that he and the other conservatives allow themselves to be wined and dined by activist groups irreparably tarnishes SCOTUS. They pretend to be above the political fray in DC, but in reality they’re down in the muck with the politicians and lobbyists. They should face more accountability.

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