WASHINGTON – Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.) today introduced the Supreme Court Transparency Act, which would increase public access to Supreme Court justices’ financial and ethics disclosures. It would provide the public with a level of transparency similar to that of the legislative branch.
“The legislative branch makes a great deal of information publicly available to those who elect them. Supreme Court justices serve lifetime appointments and should provide a similar level of transparency to Americans as the lawmakers who serve at the Capitol. The Supreme Court Transparency Act would make it easier for Americans to access the Supreme Court justices’ disclosure reports. The public deserves to have great confidence in all its public servants, and my bill would strengthen that confidence by expanding transparency to every justice on the bench,” said Kennedy.
It can take years for the public to gain access to requested public information from the Supreme Court, including the disclosure of various financial and ethics records.
This legislation would require the establishment of an internet database enabling public access to any ethics, personal finance or disclosure reports for Supreme Court justices required by federal law. It would also add the Supreme Court justices to the list of government officials who must comply with section 103(l) of the Ethics in Government Act of 1978, which requires the prompt disclosure of certain real estate and securities transactions.
The bill text is available here.