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Tipsheet

Justice Gorsuch Shares Update on SCOTUS Leak Investigation

AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall

While speaking on a panel during a judicial conference in Colorado, Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch reiterated again that the Court's investigation into the leak of a draft opinion earlier this year was continuing.

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"The chief justice appointed an internal committee to oversee the investigation," Gorsuch noted on Thursday, adding the committee has "been busy" in the months following the unprecedented leak that stunned Court watchers and breached the longstanding trust within the Supreme Court. 

"We’re looking forward to their report, I hope soon," Gorsuch added, though he didn't say whether the investigation's findings about who leaked the draft or how it ended up published by POLITICO would be released to the public. 

The Trump-nominated Gorsuch reiterated his colleagues' earlier condemnations of the leak, saying "improper efforts to influence judicial decision making, from whatever side, are a threat” to the Court's important work. “They inhibit our capacity to communicate with one another” over fears of those conversations or legal reasoning being revealed prematurely, he added. The discussion between justices — as was the case between late Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Antonin Scalia — “improves our final products,” Gorsuch explained. “I very much hope we get to the bottom of this sooner or later.”

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It seems, though, that "later" will be the reality. It's already been months since the leak occurred. The few signs of progress along the way — Supreme Court clerks being asked to sign affidavits and turn over their cell phones to investigators — have so far only resulted in statements that the pool of potential suspects has been "narrowed." 

We still don't know how "narrow" that pool of potential leak sources is, and it's unclear if the suspects are still even employed by the Supreme Court — most clerks' tenure at the Court would have come to an end just after the final opinions were issued this summer. 

As The Wall Street Journal added:

Chief Justice John Roberts announced in May that the Supreme Court marshal would lead an investigation to find the source of the leak. But since then the court has been closelipped about the inquiry, providing no public updates. Little has emerged, apart from a demand from court investigators that justices’ law clerks sit for interviews and surrender their cellphones, a June development that prompted several of the clerks to seek legal counsel

[...]

While the Dobbs decision sharply divided the court—and unleashed a new, post-Roe era in the politics of abortion—Justice Gorsuch Thursday said “there’s so much more that unites us than divides us.” He noted, for instance, his partnership with Justice Sonia Sotomayor, a Dobbs dissenter, to promote civics education.

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There's still a chance that the identity of the leaker is never made public by the Court, and it may be more likely that the leaker comes forward in due time as part of some public messaging campaign to try and become a hero to the leftist activists and Democrat politicians who used the leak to justify their illegal intimidation efforts against justices at their homes. 

For now, we'll join Justice Gorsuch in his hopes that more information is made known — at least to those on the Supreme Court — "soon."

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