Statement on the Introduction of the Supreme Court Transparency Act
Fix the Court released the following statement on the introduction of a new SCOTUS transparency bill Wednesday:
Fix the Court welcomes introduction of S. 956, the Supreme Court Transparency Act, by Sen. Kennedy. The bill would require the U.S. Courts to post the justices’ annual financial disclosures online and require the justices to file a transaction report within 45 days of a stock purchase or sale.
Should the bill undergo consideration in the Senate Judiciary Committee, we’d hope to see both reforms extended to lower court judges.
Though Fix the Court typically obtains justices’ disclosures within a month or two of the May 15 reporting deadline, it can take a year or two — or more — to obtain district and circuit justices’ reports, which severely diminishes their intended oversight value.
The third branch has fallen short of its ethical obligations for too long, and given their inaction on the topic, we believe it’s up to Congress to enact measures that strengthen the judiciary’s reporting requirements, at least to where they’re on par with those followed by lawmakers.
Given Sen. Kennedy’s interest in the topic, we’re hopeful he works with Sens. Whitehouse and Graham on their efforts, as well.