Here's the First Known Video Taken of the Supreme Court in Action

The Slatest
Your News Companion by Ben Mathis-Lilley
Feb. 27 2014 5:50 PM

Here's the First Known Video Taken of the Supreme Court in Action

The above video surfaced online today and appears to be the first known footage to be made public of the Supreme Court in action. (The high court has long fought any and all requests for cameras to be allowed in the chamber during proceedings.)

The clandestine clip, according to the Wall Street Journal, appears to contain footage from two different oral arguments: the first was from an October 2013 case on campaign finance (McCutcheon v. FEC), and the second was from an unrelated patent case from this past Wednesday, during which a protester stood up to voice his displeasure with the court's Citizens United ruling in 2010.

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The protester, identified by authorities as 33-year-old Noah Newkirk, was arrested after his outburst. It's unclear who exactly was holding the camera during his protest (and during the 2013 case), although a group called 99Rise is taking credit for the stunt. The group describes itself as "a network of activists and organizers dedicated to building a mass movement to reclaim our democracy from the domination of big money" on its website.

"The court became aware today of the video posted on YouTube," a court spokeswoman told the Journal. "Court officials are in the process of reviewing the video and our courtroom screening procedures."

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Josh Voorhees is a Slate senior writer. He lives in Iowa City. 

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