Six Democratic senators want to know if law clerks participating in a conservative organization’s training program violated the judicial codes of conduct.
The Heritage Foundation, which held the training program in February, has advocated for “repealing reproductive rights; dismantling affirmative action policies; limiting voting rights; and restrictive immigration policies,” the Judiciary Committee members said in a letter to James Duff, the director of the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts.
The organization has touted its role in helping President Donald Trump select nominees to the U.S. Supreme Court.
The anonymously-funded program originally made participants pledge their secrecy and promise not to use their training for purposes contrary to the interests of the Heritage Foundation, the senators said.
It also held a session about immigration law on the same day that the foundation released a report concerning its immigration agenda, the letter said.
The senators asked whether any current or future judge or judicial employee asked the office for advice about attending that program, and what conclusion the office reached if they did.
The letter cited guidance that the office issued after the program, which listed situations in which attending certain events could violate judicial codes of conduct.
Concerns are raised when the event sponsor engages in contentious debates over public policy and the program is funded by unknown sources, according to that guidance.
In response to the letter from the US senators, Heritage Foundation's John Malcolm issued this response, which denies any wrong-doing.
Here is more about the think tank's Federal Clerkship Training Academy. And here is what the New York Times had to say about it.