Senators Request Cameras for Health Care Ruling

The bipartisan leaders of the Senate Judiciary Committee asked the Supreme Court to allow TV cameras in the courtroom for its ruling on the Affordable Care Act, saying the step would “bolster public confidence in our judicial system.”

Chairman Patrick Leahy, D-Vermont, and Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, made the request in a letter dated Monday to Chief Justice John Roberts Jr., according to a SCOTUSblog post.

The senators explained:

“Broadcasting the Court’s ruling would permit millions of citizens the opportunity to view what so few can from the court’s small and limited public gallery. Modern technology makes televising the proceedings simple and unobtrusive. A minimal number of cameras in the courtroom, which could be placed to be barely noticeable to all participants, would provide live coverage of what may be one of the most historic rulings of our time. We believe permitting the nation to watch the proceedings would bolster public confidence in our judicial system and in the decisions of the Court.”

Veteran Supreme Court observer Lyle Denniston, who wrote the blog post, did not offer much hope to advocates of cameras at the Supreme Court. “The Court has never allowed live TV coverage of any of its official proceedings, and the prospect that it would agree to do so in this instance seems remote at best,” he wrote.


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