Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch said Thursday he hopes the report on the leaked draft opinion of the Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization decision comes soon.
“Improper efforts to influence judicial decision-making, from whatever side, from whomever, are a threat to the judicial decision-making process and inhibit our capacity to communicate with one another,” Gorsuch said at a conference for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 10th Circuit in Colorado. The Wall Street Journal and Bloomberg Law reported on his comments.
“I very much hope we get to the bottom of this sooner or later,” he added.
Gorsuch didn’t comment on if the report would be released to the public, and reporters were not allowed to conduct interviews with him or other judges, at the conference’s direction, the Journal reported.
“The chief justice appointed an internal committee to oversee the investigation,” Gorsuch said. “That committee has been busy and we’re looking forward to their report, I hope soon.”
In May, Chief Justice John Roberts said the Supreme Court marshal would be in charge of an investigation to discover where the leak came from, but the high court has been silent on the matter since that time and not discussed the topic with the public. Investigators required the clerks at the high court to take part in interviews and hand over their cellphones this past summer. At the time, many of the clerks sought lawyers of their own due to the requirements.
The Dobbs opinion was leaked prior to the official ruling being released, setting the American public — on both sides of the debate — into a frenzy over the potential overturning of Roe v. Wade. When the majority opinion was released, it was very similar to the leaked draft, resulting in decades of precedent from the Roe v. Wade ruling no longer applying. The decision returned the topic of abortion back to individual states, allowing them to pass and enact their own laws concerning the controversial procedure.
States have taken action over the past year to eradicate abortion, allow it in certain circumstances, or promote it and attract women from states where it is banned.
At the conference, Gorsuch discussed several topics in a joint public discussion with two circuit judges, including the steps American students must go through to become lawyers.
“That’s something we have to ask ourselves about: Does it really require seven years of collegiate education to become a competent lawyer?” Justice Gorsuch said.