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The Supreme Court Stonewalls In Defense Of Samuel Alito

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Justice Samuel Alito

A lawyer for the Supreme Court dismissed questions about ethics issues at the court in a terse reply to a letter from two top congressional Democrats on Monday.

Supreme Court legal counsel Ethan Torrey replied to the inquiry from Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.) and Rep. Hank Johnson (D-Ga.), each in charge of oversight of the courts in their respective chambers.

The two congressional investigators had pressed Chief Justice John Roberts to answer questions about how the court handles ethical breaches after news reports revealed a pressure campaign by the Christian conservative group Faith & Action, at the time run by Rev. Rob Schenck, that allegedly resulted in Justice Samuel Alito revealing the outcome of his 2014 decision in Burwell v. Hobby Lobby prior to its release.

Torrey did not answer any of Whitehouse and Johnson’s questions regarding ongoing or potential ethics inquiries into the court’s leaked draft opinion overturning Roe v. Wade, or into Alito’s alleged leak of the Hobby Lobby outcome. Nor did he say which justices received gifts as part of the religious right pressure campaign.

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