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Kagan: From "a terrific thing" to "conflicted"

All nine sitting justices have at some point in their careers expressed positive or at least neutral sentiments toward putting cameras in the Supreme Court to televise oral arguments and opinion announcements.

For whatever reason, the justices today balk at the question – or have changed their opinion outright. That includes Justice Kagan.

Here are her own words on cameras in the court, changing over time:

2009: “If cameras were in the courtroom, the American public would see an extraordinary event. This court is […] so engaged, and everybody who gets up at the podium, […] the most challenging questions are thrown at that person. […] I think if you put cameras in the courtroom, people would say, ‘wow,’ [and] see their government working at a really high level.” July 23, 2009, Ninth Circuit Judicial Conference

2010 confirmation hearing: “I have said that I think it would be a terrific thing to have cameras in the courtroom. […] I think it would be a great thing for the institution, and more important, I think it would be a great thing for the American people.” June 29, 2010

2015: “There’s some reason to be a little bit careful about going to down this road. I’m very conflicted about this issue.” Institute of Politics at the University of Chicago, February 2, 2015

Fix the Court believes that the justices – either of their own accord or compelled by Congress – should grant the media and the public greater access to oral arguments and opinion announcements through the live broadcast of those events.

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