News Roundup

Afternoon Briefs: Senate confirms Biden appellate judge; how SCOTUS justices supplemented their 2020 income

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Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson headshot

U.S. District Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson. Photo from the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia.

Senate confirms Biden’s first appellate judge

On Monday, the U.S. Senate confirmed U.S. District Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. Jackson is President Joe Biden’s first affirmed appellate judge and will replace Merrick Garland, who is now the U.S. attorney general. While she is also considered a potential nominee for the U.S. Supreme Court, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said in a radio interview Monday that Republicans would probably block any of Biden’s nominees ahead of the 2024 presidential election if they regain control of the Senate in the 2022 midterm election. (The New York Times, the Washington Post, the Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg Law, Courthouse News Service)

How did SCOTUS justices supplement their salaries in 2020?

Eight U.S. Supreme Court justices supplemented last year’s salaries with book advances and royalties, teaching income or rental payments, according to 2020 financial disclosures released by the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts on Friday. According to Fix the Court, which published the disclosures, Justice Sonia Sotomayor was the top earner. She received a $212,181 payout from book publisher Penguin Random House, which included royalties for books, such as Turning Pages and Just Ask!: Be Different, Be Brave, Be You. She also received up to $15,000 in rent from her apartment in New York. Justice Samuel Alito’s disclosure was not included in the release. (Fix the Court, SCOTUSblog, Law360)

Former Trump official represents Republicans in lawsuit over security screening

Republican U.S. Reps. Louie Gohmert of Texas and Andrew Clyde of Georgia are suing House sergeant-at-arms William Walker and Catherine Szpindor, chief administrative officer for the House, over a rule passed after the Jan. 6 U.S. Capitol attack that requires members to go through security screening before entering the House chamber. Gohmert and Clyde, the first to be fined for violating the measure, hired former Homeland Security official Ken Cuccinelli to represent them in the lawsuit. Cuccinelli remained in the department through the end of the Trump administration, despite a federal judge ruling in March 2020 that his appointment to the position was unlawful. According to, Cuccinelli, who is also the former attorney general of Virginia, is now a solo practitioner and visiting fellow with the Heritage Foundation. (, the June 13 complaint)

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