Politico boosts security after Supreme Court ‘Roe v. Wade’ scoop

Media outlet Politico is reportedly taking fresh security precautions at its newsroom following its bombshell report on a leaked draft opinion indicating the Supreme Court intends to overturn Roe v. Wade.

An internal memo details an updated safety plan that includes a notice that staffers should be aware of outside individuals loitering near its headquarters in northern Virginia or attempting to follow them inside.

“Be aware of anyone accessing our elevators with you and the possibility of ‘tailgating’ to your floor,” the memo notes, according to the Daily Beast, which obtained the security memo and cited discussions with a source familiar with the matter.

The security memo also noted that the company would be limiting access to its offices for the time being.

“Given the heightened visibility to Politico following our reporting on the Supreme Court last night, we would like to ensure that you are aware of several additional safety measures that we are proactively putting in place,” Politico chief talent officer Traci Schweikert said in the memo to employees.

Politico employees were also urged to take action aimed at protecting themselves online, such as deleting their employment information from their social media accounts.

Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision
Demonstrators protested the leaked ruling outside the Supreme Court on May 3, 2022.
AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin

Politico did not immediately return a request for comment on the report.

The warning from Politico’s brass and the enhanced security measures were a preemptive move to protect workers rather than a response to a specific threat.

Politico’s report late Monday on the leaked draft opinion sparked a massive outcry by revealing that the conservative-majority panel is prepared to strike down Roe v. Wade — the 1973 court ruling that assured federal protection of abortion rights.

In its initial story on the leaked opinion, Politico noted that the leak of a draft decision on a case that was still pending was unprecedented.

Associate Justice Samuel Alito
Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito argued “Roe was egregiously wrong from the start,” according to a leaked majority opinion.
Erin Schaff/The New York Times via AP, Pool

The outlet said it received a copy from what it described as “a person familiar with the court’s proceedings” in a Mississippi case related to the state’s bid to ban most abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy — earlier than permitted under the precedent established by Roe v. Wade.

“We hold that Roe and Casey must be overruled,” Justice Samuel Alito wrote in the draft in a section titled the “Opinion of the Court.” “Casey” refers to Planned Parenthood v. Casey, a 1992 high court decision that upheld Roe.

“It is time to heed the Constitution and return the issue of abortion to the people’s elected representatives,” he added.

Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts later confirmed the draft opinion’s authenticity and ordered an investigation into the leak — describing the situation as a “betrayal of the confidences of the court.” He noted the draft document does not indicate a final decision or position for any justice.

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