The Supreme Courtroom’s Bar Membership Is Not “Shrouded in Secrecy.” – Purpose.com

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The Supreme Court’s Bar Membership Is Not “Shrouded in Secrecy.” – Reason.com

The Georgetown Policy Review published an article by Henry Baumgarten entitled “Open the Bar: Toward Greater Supreme Court Transparency”. It begins:

The United States Supreme Court hides the names of the lawyers serving on the Supreme Court Bar Association. This lack of transparency is unusual and raises many concerns. If the Supreme Court does not follow the example of courts across the country and does not publicize its legal membership, Congress should step in.

The essay later comes to the conclusion: “Membership of the Bar Association of the Supreme Court remains for the time being shrouded in secrecy. “

Barely. The Supreme Court publishes the name of each admitted member and the name of each disciplined member. Where is this information recorded? Most people, and perhaps the author of the article, are unfamiliar with the Supreme Court Journal. It is published annually and published on the Court’s website.

For example, see page 649 of the October 2015 Journal. You can find the notation of my admission to the bar at the Supreme Court. (Zubik v. Burwell was argued on that day).

The journal also shows all members who are excluded.

The Supreme Court does not have a searchable database of all members. And there is no easy way to tell if members have passed away. But it is just not true that membership of the Tribunal is “kept secret”.