“It was a great betrayal of trust by somebody, and it was a shock because nothing like that had happened in the past, so it certainly changed the atmosphere at the court for the remainder of last term,” Alito said during an event at the Washington-based Heritage Foundation in response to a question about how the leak has affected the court.
Alito, who was nominated by former President George W. Bush and is part of the 6-3 conservative majority on the Supreme Court, authored the draft and final opinion that removed constitutional protections for abortion.
In his remarks Tuesday, Alito referred to the charges against Nicholas John Roske, of Simi Valley, California, who was armed with a handgun, a knife, pepper spray and burglary tools when he was arrested in June near Justice Brett Kavanaugh’s home, in between the release of the leaked draft and the court's eventual ruling. Roske has pleaded not guilty to trying to kill Kavanaugh.
Get Boston local news, weather forecasts, lifestyle and entertainment stories to your inbox. Sign up for NBC Boston’s newsletters.