Updated May 3, 2022 - Politics & Policy

Supreme Court opens investigation into Politico leak

Alito and Roberts
Photo: Chief Justice John Roberts (R) and Justice Samuel Alito (L) walk down the steps of the Supreme Court house after an investiture ceremony for Alito Feb. 16, 2006. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

Chief Justice John Roberts confirmed the authenticity of the leaked Supreme Court draft document on the end of Roe v. Wade, but said it did not represent the court's final decision.

Driving the news: Roberts said the court will open an investigation into the leak.

  • Late Monday, Politico posted a story reporting that the court has voted to overturn Roe v. Wade — and published a leaked draft of that majority opinion, written by Samuel Alito.

What they're saying: Roberts said the document’s leak would not affect the work of the court “in any way.”

  • "We at the Court are blessed to have a workforce — permanent employees and law clerks alike — intensely loyal to the institution and dedicated to the rule of law," he said.
  • "This was a singular and egregious breach of that trust that is an affront to the Court and the community of public servants who work here."
  • "I have directed the Marshall of the Court to launch an investigation into the source of the leak."

State of play: In the wake of the leak President Biden on Tuesday urged Congress to codify Roe v. Wade into law, saying, “it will fall on our nation’s elected officials at all levels of government to protect a woman’s right to choose.”

  • The leak also promoted some Democratic candidates to call on the Senate to eliminate the filibuster in order to enshrine abortion rights into federal law.

The big picture: If the Supreme Court were to overturn its precedents, abortion access would no longer be federally protected and instead a patchwork of state laws would govern the procedure, writes Axios' Oriana Gonzalez.

Go deeper: Supreme Court leak stuns nation

Editor's note: This is a developing story and has been updated throughout.

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