Is the Supreme Court truly secure?
The Roe V. Wade draft opinion leak, which details the majority decision to overturn the landmark Roe v. Wade decision, has become the most incredible breach in the Supreme Court’s history. The leak will likely sow distrust among the justices and cause the court’s already tarnished reputation to be further damaged.
While the leak has forced Americans to confront the possibility that federal government protections over abortion could vanish in the coming months, scholars and insiders are expressing concern about the significance of the leak.
Steven D. Schwinn, a professor at the University of Illinois Chicago Law School, noted that it would be “hard to overstate how significant this is.”
The draft opinion, authored by conservative Justice Samuel Alito, is still subject to change, as justices can change opinions and potentially vote trade, in the next two months before the final decision is released in late June.
After confirming the leak’s authenticity, Chief Justice John Robers revealed that he had directed the marshal of the Supreme Court to launch an investigation.
“This was a singular and egregious of [the Court’s] trust that is an affront to the community of public servants who work here,” Roberts said.
Carter Phillips, a former clerk to then-Chief Justice Warren Burger and presently a partner at Sidley Austin, called the leak “appalling and reprehensible.”
Phillips added that the leak would likely “create an environment of distrust among the justices and between the justices and the law clerks at least until the Court figures out who is the source.”
He noted that this would not be a “helpful situation” as the Court nears the end of term.