Senators are now asking for the travel records for all of the Supreme Court justices.
These travel records should cover the last 10-years.
The timing of the request is raising many eyebrows, especially as audits into the 2020 presidential election is occurring in multiple states.
To make things more interesting, Mike Lindell recently predicted that the Supreme Court would rule 9-0 in overturning the 2020 election.
Is the timing of this strictly coincidental?
Or are things happening behind the scenes that the public doesn’t know about?
— The Hill (@thehill) June 8, 2021
The bipartisan pair of senators asked what steps the Supreme Court takes to prevent the justices from receiving gifts, travel or hospitality from those who may have business before the court.https://t.co/Cb9iqoUSyl
— Roll Call (@rollcall) June 9, 2021
Senators are requesting ten years worth of travel records for U.S. Supreme Court justices as part of their efforts to assess transparency requirements for the nation’s highest court. https://t.co/6f0Wzz5plv
— Bloomberg Law (@BLaw) June 8, 2021
There is legal precedent for this.
Public servants must disclose any “outside income, gifts, and reimbursements on an annual basis.”
SCOTUS justices should not be immune from such requirements, several senators are arguing.
The New York Post has more details:
Two Senate Judiciary Committee members are seeking the travel records of Supreme Court justices dating back a decade, claiming the disclosure would improve transparency in the judicial branch.
Sens. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) and John Kennedy (R-La.) made the request in a letter to Attorney General Merrick Garland and US Marshals Service Director Donald Washington dated June 4 and made public Tuesday.
The senators have asked for all documentation relating to trips outside Washington by justices since the beginning of 2011. The requests include the names of the justices who took each trip, the dates of each trip, the locations the justices traveled to and the cost of the Marshals Service of providing security for each trip.
The senators explained that the Ethics in Government Act of 1978 and Ethics Reform Act of 1989 requires government officials to disclose “outside income, gifts, and reimbursements on an annual basis.”
“The Executive Branch and both chambers of Congress have issued implementing regulations and/or rules that require disclosures beyond what the above-cited statutes require,” Whitehouse and Kennedy wrote before adding: “The Judicial Branch’s comparable guidelines are significantly less stringent.
“Even those requirements, however, do not formally apply to the justices of the Supreme Court,” the letter went on. “As a result, the justices of our highest court are subject to the lowest standards of transparency of any senior officials across the federal government.”
As a concession to security concerns, Whitehouse and Kennedy said they would be willing to “redact appropriately any sensitive [personal identifying information] of the justices and their families.”
Progressive groups have pressed justices to be more forthcoming about their travel, including providing information about the cost of trips. They also want the justices to disclose lodging and entertainment currently exempt from being made public because it is considered “personal hospitality.”
As 2020 election audits move forward, it is likely that several cases may end up before the high court.
Making travel records public would ensure there is no conflict of interests with foreign entities.
Senators request travel records of Supreme Court justices https://t.co/UD3Os8rvms
— Washington Examiner (@dcexaminer) June 9, 2021
This is being part of a larger ethics investigation that is going on.
What makes this request particularly interesting is that it is a bipartisan request by both Democrats and Republicans.
How often do you see things happening in a bipartisan fashion?
That makes this request particularly interesting.
Fox News confirms that both Democrats and Republicans are making the formal request:
A bipartisan pair of senators are seeking travel documents for the Supreme Court justices as they question whether the High Court needs better transparency requirements.
Sens. Sheldon Whitehouse, D-R.I., and John Kennedy, R-La., sent a letter dated Friday requesting travel records for all Supreme Court Justice’s trips outside of Washington, D.C., since Jan. 1, 2011, including the name of the justice traveling, the location and the cost for security on each of those trips for the last decade.
The senators, both members of the Senate Judiciary Committee, say they are reviewing financial disclosure standards for the receipt of gifts and travel by senior government officials – including judges – under the Ethics in Government Act of 1978 and Ethics Reform Act of 1989. They raise concerns that members of the judiciary have far less stringent rules on financial disclosures than members of Congress and the executive branch, with the nine Supreme Court justices especially facing little scrutiny.
“The Judicial Branch’s comparable guidelines are significantly less stringent,” Whitehouse and Kennedy said in the letter. “Even those requirements, however, do not formally apply to the justices of the Supreme Court. As a result, the justices of our highest court are subject to the lowest standards of transparency of any senior officials across the federal government.”
The senators’ letter was addressed to Attorney General Merrick Garland and the United States Marshals Service Director Donald W. Washington. The Marshals Service provides security to justices during their travel outside of Washington, D.C., and their records would show how the justices’ travel disclosures compare to other federal senior officials, the senators say.
Supreme Court travel had raised conflict of interest concerns in the past.
For example, the late Justice Antonin Scalia was once the Supreme Court’s most frequent traveler in trips paid for by private sponsors, with at least 259 subsidized trips from 2004 to 2014, The New York Times previously reported. When Scalia died on Feb. 13, 2016, he was staying for free at a West Texas hunting lodge owned by a businessman whose company had recently had a matter before the Supreme Court, the paper found.
It’s about time that there is transparency and integrity in our government.
This request is just the first step.
The American people need to know that their representatives, president, and justices truly work for them.