Stanton, Steube Introduce Bipartisan Bill to Permanently Extend Security for Supreme Court Justices
WASHINGTON—Rep. Greg Stanton and Rep. Greg Steube of Florida this week introduced a bipartisan bill to permanently extend security protection of Justices of the Supreme Court outside the Supreme Court grounds. Current law authorizes the Supreme Court Police to protect justices—however, the authority to protect them outside of Supreme Court grounds is temporary and set to expire at the end of this year.
“Ensuring the safety of our lawmakers and justices is a nonpartisan issue,” said Rep. Stanton. “Our Supreme Court Justices—who preside over the highest court in our nation—should be afforded the same protections as Senators, members of House leadership and the President.”
“Protecting those who have committed their lives to public service is of the utmost importance,” said Rep. Steube. “I’m proud to support this legislation that will ensure our Supreme Court Justices receive adequate protection for generations to come.”
The permanent authority provided by H.R. 4258 would allow for long-term management of protective activities and remove the threat of disruptions and security gaps. It also clarifies that protection for the Justices outside of the United States is included, should the need arise.
Additionally, the bill would provide parity between the Supreme Court Police and the Capitol Police and Secret Service.
In a bipartisan manner, Congress has previously renewed the Supreme Court Police’s authority to offer protections off-grounds nine times—most recently in 2013 for six years. The current authority to provide protection outside of the Supreme Court grounds will expire December 29, 2019.
Threats against Supreme Court Justices have increased in line with threats against lawmakers, which are on track to exceed a record-breaking number reported in 2018 according to CNN.