How Supreme Court Keeps Obamacare Ruling a Secret

Any clerk who leaks information would be ostracized
By Neal Colgrass,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 24, 2012 2:33 PM CDT
How the Supreme Court Keeps Obamacare Ruling a Secret
WASHINGTON, DC - JUNE 21: An exterior view of the U.S. Supreme Court on June 21, 2012 in Washington, DC. The Supreme Court is expected to hand down its ruling on the Healthcare Reform Law before the end of its 2011-2012 term.   (Getty Images)

Hoping for a leak from the Supreme Court on its upcoming Obamacare ruling? Don't hold your breath. Unlike the legislative and executive branches of government, the Supreme Court is known for having a tight lip. That means keeping nine justices as well as clerks, aides, support staff, family members, and others mum on the historic ruling—which, by the way, they do already know about, the AP reports.

Clerks in particular are warned to stay quiet, and the incentive is there: Any known leaker would lose a future cushy lawyering job that's guaranteed to bring in six figures. Worse, leakers who aren't caught would put extra pressure on the entire class to clamp down. "So what's in it for a clerk to leak?" said one former clerk. The worst threat may be from printers who publish the rulings; more than 30 years ago, ABC News revealed a ruling a day early, and a printing shop worker was quickly shifted to another job. (Read more US Supreme Court stories.)

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