Newsman: The United States Senate passed a bill to grant security for the families of U.S. Supreme Court justices unanimously Monday. It aims to put the court on par with the executive and legislative branches, making certain the nine justices are provided security as some protesters have gathered outside their homes. The bill now moves to the House for its consideration.
The bipartisan bill passed by voice vote with no objections, did not provide additional funding, which could come later.
The Supreme Court Police Parity Act would provide police protection to the immediate families of the nine justices and other officers of the court, if the “Marshal determines such protection is necessary,” the legislation says.
The bill follows a leak last week of a draft Supreme Court opinion that, if unchanged, would overturn Roe v. Wade, the 1973 case that federally legalized abortions.
A protest and vigil against the move was organized at Justice Samuel Alito’s house Monday.
“Because it’s been impossible to reach him at the Supreme Court (especially now with the enormous fences), we will do it at his home,” said the event’s organizer, ShutDownDC.
Protests have erupted in front of the Supreme Court Building and around the country after a leaked draft opinion suggested a majority of conservatives on the court are prepared to end the constitutional right to an abortion.
The bill, which was introduced by Sen. John Cornyn, a Texas Republican, will now go before the House of Representatives.
“Threats to the physical safety of Supreme Court Justices and their families are disgraceful, and attempts to intimidate and influence the independence of our judiciary cannot be tolerated,” Cornyn said in a statement.
The Senate legislation is a technical change that allows Supreme Court law enforcement to provide around-the-clock security to immediate family members, in line with protection for some people in the executive and legislative branches.