Report: Probe into Supreme Court Leak Demands Clerks’ Phone Records, Affidavits

Man in suit using cell phone secretively
iStock/Getty Images Plus

The Supreme Court’s probe into the leaked draft abortion opinion has reportedly intensified into requiring law clerks to hand over phone records and sign affidavits.

“Some clerks are apparently so alarmed over the moves, particularly the sudden requests for private cell data, that they have begun exploring whether to hire outside counsel,” CNN reported. It is not clear what scope, content, or time period the affidavits and cell phone search may cover.

The reported escalation into cell phone data and affidavits indicate the court has not found the leaker. Cell phone data may be a key to discovering the leaker’s identity.

Both hard copies and electronic copies of draft opinions were likely circulated within the court from Justice Samuel Alito’s February 11 draft opinion. The leaked draft was probably distributed among the court’s clerks and staffers of the nine justices. The number of individuals who likely had access to the leaked opinion may be over 60 people.

Chief Justice John Roberts reportedly held a group meeting with the court’s law clerks, but it is unknown if any individual interviews have occurred to discover who leaked the draft opinion on May 2. Roberts initiated the probe on May 3 by designating the marshal of the court, Gail Curley, as the lead.

“This was a singular and egregious breach of that trust that is an affront to the Court and the community of public servants who work here,” Roberts said in a press release.

“To the extent this betrayal of the confidences of the Court was intended to undermine the integrity of our operations, it will not succeed,” Roberts wrote. “The work of the Court will not be affected in any way.”

Follow Wendell Husebø on Twitter and Gettr @WendellHusebø. He is the author of Politics of Slave Morality.


Please let us know if you're having issues with commenting.