Did Supreme Court interview justices and spouses in Roe leak?

Did investigators even interview the Supreme Court justices and their spouses in the Roe v. Wade leak? Glaring holes appear in report that confirmed investigators cannot find the source of the bombshell draft last May

  • Supreme Court said it can’t find person who leaked opinion to news Politico
  • But report didn’t say if the justices and their spouses were interviewed
  • The nine justices publicly condemned the leak

There was no mention if the nine justices or their spouses were interviewed as part of the Supreme Court‘s investigation into the leak of a draft of Justice Samuel Alito’s opinion that overturned Roe v. Wade.

The glaring gap in the investigation comes after the court concluded it may never know who leaked the draft to Politico, which published its bombshell story on May 2. 

The nine justices have publicly and vocally condemned the leak but the 23-page report – which details an eight-month investigation, more than 120 interviews, and a forensic examination of cell phones, laptops and email accounts – made no mention of whether the justices talked to the investigators. 

A spokesperson for the court did not immediately respond to DailyMail.com’s request for comment.

The U.S. Supreme Court justices were not interviewed as part of the court's investigation into the leaked opinion: Seated (L-R): Justices Sonia Sotomayor, Clarence Thomas, Chief Justice John G. Roberts, Jr., Samuel A. Alito, Jr. and Elena Kagan. Standing (L-R): Justices Amy Coney Barrett, Neil M. Gorsuch, Brett M. Kavanaugh and Ketanji Brown Jackson

The U.S. Supreme Court justices were not interviewed as part of the court’s investigation into the leaked opinion: Seated (L-R): Justices Sonia Sotomayor, Clarence Thomas, Chief Justice John G. Roberts, Jr., Samuel A. Alito, Jr. and Elena Kagan. Standing (L-R): Justices Amy Coney Barrett, Neil M. Gorsuch, Brett M. Kavanaugh and Ketanji Brown Jackson

The leaked draft lead to protests across the nation and in front of the court

The leaked draft lead to protests across the nation and in front of the court

The report, issued on Thursday, effectively cleared the justices’ law clerks of the leak. It also detailed the lack of security safeguards that made it easy to slip the information out of the building. 

Politico’s bombshell report rocked the court to its foundations. Conservatives blamed liberals for the leak while liberals said it was the conservatives, who wanted to shore up the 5-4 vote that would overturn Roe v. Wade.

The justices themselves weighed in. 

Justice Alito called the leak a ‘grave betrayal of trust by somebody, and it was a shock’ that led to a ‘changed’ atmosphere at the court. Justice Clarence Thomas compared it to infidelity. 

Chief Justice John Roberts ordered an investigation into what he termed an ‘egregious breast of trust.’

But even after the draft opinion revealed Alito and four conservative judges were going to vote to overturn Roe, Roberts tried to persuade at least one of the five to vote with him and the liberals to preserve abortions rights, reported CNN, which was also first reported the gap in the investigation. 

The leaked decision made Roberts’ negotiating efforts all the more difficult, the network reported.

And it wasn’t the first leak, according to a November report in the New York Times that claimed that the Rev. Rob Schenck got an early warning that the Supreme Court would rule, in a case brought about by Hobby Lobby, that requiring family-owned corporations to pay for insurance covering contraception violated their religious freedoms.

Schenck, who used to lead an evangelical nonprofit in Washington, detailed to the Times how he learned about the 2014 ruling in advance. He also said he wrote about the matter to Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts.

He said in June 2014, an Ohio couple who donated to his group had a meal with Alito and Alito’s wife Martha-Ann. The next day, Gayle Wright, one of the pair, contacted Schenck to tell him the decision would be favorable to Hobby Lobby and was written by Alito.

Three weeks later, the court’s released ruling confirmed that. 

Alito denied the allegation.

‘The allegation that the Wrights were told the outcome of the decision in the Hobby Lobby case, or the authorship of the opinion of the Court, by me or my wife is completely false. My wife and I became acquainted with the Wrights some years ago because of their strong support for the Supreme Court Historical Society, and since then, we have had a casual and purely social relationship,’ he said in a statement.

Timeline on leak as published in Supreme Court report

February 10: The draft Dobbs opinion was sent via email to a distribution list of 70 people consisting of law clerks and permanent court personnel who work on opinions. 

March 22: Eight more permanent personnel received the draft opinion via email. Later, investigators found that two additional permanent personnel accessed the draft opinion electronically by separate means.

May 22: Politico publishes draft opinion

May 23: Chief Justice Roberts confirms its authenticity when he orders an investigation into the leak 

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Politico published its explosive leak on May 2, resulting in a seismic cultural shift that was politically polarizing across the nation. Since the Supreme Court’s ruling in 1973, the right to an abortion was federally recognized across the U.S. and this memo revealed that a nearly 50-year ruling was about to be overturned. 

The high court on Thursday released a 23-page report on its review into the leak stating that ‘they have been unable to identify a person responsible by a preponderance of the evidence.’

Investigators, however, also found fault with court itself, saying its security policies were out of date and much of the system was built on trust, which made it ‘too easy to remove sensitive information from the building’ – an indication the mystery of the person may never be solved. 

It also did not rule out a copy of the opinion was simply left lying around, ‘for example, by being left in a public space either inside or outside the building.’ 

Politico reporters Josh Gerstein and Alexander Ward wrote the bombshell story that revealed the court’s intentions. 

Trump also called for their arrest shortly after their story was published in early May.

The final opinion released in the Dobbs case on June 24 was strikingly similar to the draft opinion that Politico released. The publication resulted in fury from Democrats over the expected setback in abortion rights and suspicions from Republicans the leak was done to ensure the draft opinion stood.

A cyber security breach was also ruled out. 

The Supreme Court announced that it cannot identify the person who leaked a draft of Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health Organization

The Supreme Court announced that it cannot identify the person who leaked a draft of Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization

‘While investigators and the Court’s IT experts cannot absolutely rule out a hack, the evidence to date reveals no suggestion of improper outside access.’ the court’s report said.

‘After examining the Court’s computer devices, networks, printers, and available call and text logs, investigators have found no forensic evidence indicating who disclosed the draft opinion,’ the report stated. 

Investigators are still conducting their search.

‘To the extent that additional investigation yields new evidence or leads, the investigators will pursue them.’ the report noted.

But the leak shook the court to its foundations. The secretive body took pride in its lack of leaks. And it frayed relationships among the justices.

The decision also led to protests outside the court and threats to several of the justices. Alito and Justice Brett Kavanaugh had protesters outside of the D.C. area homes.

When the final decision was released in late June, it was remarkably similar to the draft that was leaked. Alito, Thomas, Gorsuch, Kavanaugh and Justice Amy Coney Barrett voted to overturn Roe.

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