Report: SCOTUS failed to disclose previous financial relationship with investigator of pre-Roe leak

This week, CNN reported that the US Supreme Court failed to publicly disclose its previous business relationship with the individual selected to investigate the scandalous leak of a draft opinion that revealed the high court was set to overturn Roe v Wade early last year. 

According to sources who spoke with CNN anonymously, the Supreme Court has had an ongoing relationship with the investigator who led the probe into who leaked the draft opinion that threw the country’s political landscape into turmoil in early May of 2022. The investigator, Michael Chertoff, a former George W. Bush administration official, owns a security risk management firm, The Chertoff Group, which has been paid about $1 million in recent years to assess security at the justices’ homes and other COVID-specific SCOTUS security assessments.

The business relationship between SCOTUS and The Chertoff Group was not disclosed in any of the documents pertaining to Chertoff’s review of the leaked draft opinion before, during or after he carried out the investigation. The Supreme Court is not required by law to disclose such contractual relationships, but its decision not to reveal the $1 million contract is the latest in a string of events in recent months that has raised eyebrows over the court’s well-known shroud of secrecy – especially surrounding the draft opinion leak. Chertoff’s investigation did not ultimately discover who was responsible for leaking the draft opinion.

Additionally, Chertoff has long-standing relationships with several of the Supreme Court justices. He is known to have been a friend of Chief Justice John Roberts since law school, and has worked with Justices Alito, Gorsuch and Kavanaugh in the past as well in various capacities, including in the Bush White House. 

The discovery of the relationship between SCOTUS and Chertoff has renewed calls for increased transparency from the high court. 




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