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Quigley Calls on Supreme Court to Bring Cameras to the Courtroom

Mar 24, 2015
Press Release

WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Representative Mike Quigley (IL-05) led a letter to Chief Justice John Roberts urging the Supreme Court to allow video and live audio in the chamber in light of the upcoming same-sex marriage cases. 

“The American public is better served when all three branches of our government are transparent and accessible. The opportunity to view the high court’s cases in real time would greatly expand the Court’s accessibility to average Americans and provide historic and educational value. Furthermore, greater public access to the Supreme Court will undoubtedly lead to greater accountability and a better understanding of our country’s judicial system,” Rep. Quigley wrote. 

“The Supreme Court makes too many important decisions to deny the American people the opportunity to view its proceedings. The recent decision of the Supreme Court to rule on the issue of same-sex marriage is a primary example of a significant case that the public would greatly benefit from being able to observe firsthand.”

Rep. Quigley was joined by Reps. Castor, Cohen, Connolly, Doggett, Lynch, Nadler, Pascrell and Yarmuth.

Rep. Quigley has been advocating for a more open and transparent Supreme Court since his arrival to Washington in 2009. Rep. Quigley is the author of the landmark Transparency in Government Act, a wide-ranging good government reform bill that would bring unprecedented access and accountability to the federal government. It also includes a provision requiring the Supreme Court to live-stream audio of its proceedings. Earlier this year, Rep. Quigley hosted a Transparency Caucus briefing titled “Broadcasting Justice: A Discussion about Cameras and Audio in the Supreme Court.”  In January, he re-introduced the bipartisan Cameras in the Courtroom Act, requiring the Supreme Court to permit television coverage of all open sessions of the Court. This past year, he authored an opinion piece in the Chicago Sun-Times arguing for real time – live audio recordings during Supreme Court hearings. In 2013, Rep. Quigley raised the issue of permitting video transmission of SCOTUS’ public argument sessions directly with two Supreme Court justices during a House Appropriations Committee hearing.