Alito Abandons First Scheduled Public Appearance Since Roe Opinion Leak

WASHINGTON, DC - MARCH 07: U.S. Supreme Court Associate Justice Samuel Alito testifies about the court's budget during a hearing of the House Appropriations Committee's Financial Services and General Government Subco... WASHINGTON, DC - MARCH 07: U.S. Supreme Court Associate Justice Samuel Alito testifies about the court's budget during a hearing of the House Appropriations Committee's Financial Services and General Government Subcommittee March 07, 2019 in Washington, DC. Members of the subcommittee asked the justices about court security, televising oral arguments and codes of ethics for the court. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images) MORE LESS

Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito has scrapped plans to attend a judicial conference that begins on Thursday, which would’ve been his first public appearance since a bombshell draft of his opinion dismantling Roe v. Wade was leaked on Monday.

Supreme Court spokesperson Patricia McCabe confirmed to Reuters on Wednesday that Alito would not be going to the judicial conference for the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, the appellate court the justice is assigned to oversee.

McCabe did not explain Alito’s cancellation.

Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, who reportedly voted with Alito to strike down Roe, is scheduled to speak at the judicial conference for the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Friday. Chief Justice John Roberts is slated to appear at the same conference on Thursday.

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The Supreme Court has publicly commented on the leak only once so far, when it confirmed on Tuesday that the draft was authentic but “does not represent a decision by the Court or the final position of any member on the issues in the case.”

The confirmation came as a part of Roberts’ announcement that he had ordered the Marshal of the Court to investigate the leak, which he described as a “singular and egregious breach of that trust that is an affront to the Court and the community of public servants who work here.”

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