Will Someone be Charged for Leaking Alito’s Draft Overturning Roe v Wade?


The morning after the nation was shell shocked by an historic leak of a Supreme Court draft opinion that appears to overturn Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey, Chief Justice John Roberts referred to the leak as a “singular and egregious breach of the court’s trust” and directed the court’s marshal to launch an investigation in order to identify how the 98 page document became public. The right have made calls for the source of the leak to be held criminally responsible. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), referred to the leak as a lawless action that should be investigated and punished as fully as possible and he specifically encouraged Chief Justice Roberts and the Department of Justice to pursue criminal charges if applicable.


It is DOJ policy not to treat leaks as crimes if someone with legitimate access to the documents, in this case a justice, a clerk, or an assistant, leaked the information because they thought the public should know about it. Experts say that while there may be professional consequences such as being fired from the court or losing their law license, it is almost certain that nobody is going to be charged, assuming they had legitimate access to the document.


📸: The New York Times


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