Report: Supreme Court Justices Get Free Travel


Every member of the U.S. Supreme Court received free travel in 2014, according to a report by Reity O’Brien, a reporter for the Center for Public Integrity.

The news site compiled financial disclosures detailing “the stock holdings, travel, spousal income, gifts and debts of the nine Supreme Court justices (which) show the many ways that the judges can pad their finances.”

The site found that, through investments, most justice are millionaires, and all nine were paid to travel. Six of the justices received paid trips to Europe in 2014, according to the Center for Public Integrity.

The justices do not have to disclose the costs of their reimbursed travels, which included a three-week multi-stop trip that Justice Anthony Kennedy took to Salzburg, Austria, San Francisco and Aspen, Colorado, last July, paid for by the Aspen Institute and the University of the Pacific. New York University also paid for Sonia Sotomayor and Ruth Bader Ginsburg to travel to Florence, Italy. Chief Justice John Roberts taught a class on the history of the Supreme Court to students of the New England School of Law in London.

Other sources of income noted in the report include: teaching fees, rental fees and real estate.

The report also notes the relatively outdated process required to obtain judicial financial disclosures.

To check out the financial interests of the more than 3,200 federal judges, members of the public must request the documents by snail mail from court administrators in Washington, D.C., pay for reproduction costs, then pick them up either in person or have them shipped. By comparison, Congress makes its members' reports available in a searchable database,” O’Brien writes.

Read the full report HERE.

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