Senate Passes Leahy-Authored Bill To Extend Supreme Court Police Authority

A bill introduced by Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) to extend the authority of the United States Supreme Court Police to protect court officials and justices off the Supreme Court grounds unanimously passed the Senate Thursday.  The legislation will now be sent to the House of Representatives for consideration. 


Leahy introduced the legislation in the Senate in July, and the Judiciary Committee reported the measure on September 11.   The current authorization is set to expire at the end of the year.  The bill will extend protection for Supreme Court Justices and other court officials until 2013, and changes the title of the Administrative Assistant to the Chief Justice to Counselor to the Chief Justice.  The bill also contains a provision prohibiting judges and justices from accepting honorary club memberships valued at more than $50. 


“I am pleased that the Republican objection that had stalled this legislation has been lifted, and the Senate has passed this important authorization before recessing,” said Leahy.  “This is a bill that will help ensure the safety of our Supreme Court justices.  I hope the House can quickly pass this legislation and send it to the President for signature.”


Companion legislation introduced in the House of Representatives was passed by the House on Monday.


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