Whitehouse is the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Federal Courts, Oversight, Agency Action and Federal Rights; Kennedy is the top Republican on that panel.
A nonprofit group obtained similar records through a public records request in 2018 and found examples of security for trips to the theater for Justice Sonia Sotomayor and a night at the opera for the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, but security for only one part of the late Justice Antonin Scalia’s fateful hunting trip to western Texas in February 2016 when he died.
Such trips could raise concerns about conflicts of interest when the justices have their expenses paid. Scalia, who went on 259 expenses-paid trips from 2004 to 2014, was staying for free at a hunting lodge owned by a businessman whose company had recently had a matter before the Supreme Court, The New York Times reported at the time.
The judicial branch has less stringent guidelines on reporting requirements than the executive branch and both chambers of Congress, and those don’t even formally apply to the Supreme Court justices, the letter from Whitehouse and Kennedy points out.
Whitehouse sent a letter to Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. on a similar issue in February, along with South Carolina Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham, also a member of the Judiciary Committee.