The Supreme Court on Friday rejected requests to allow television cameras in the courtroom for the upcoming arguments on President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul, though said it would release audio recordings of the proceedings on the same day.
In a statement, the court acknowledged the “extraordinary public interest” in the proceedings, set to be held over three days beginning March 26. Still, it was not enough to shake the long-held tradition of barring recording devices of any kind from the courtroom, despite pleas from many news organizations.
Instead, the court will post audio files and transcripts on its website in the afternoon following each day of proceedings.
Following the announcement, the C-SPAN cable network said it would broadcast the arguments on its cable channel and on the radio as soon as the recordings are available. A statement from the network said it was “disappointed” the court rejected its request to air the proceedings live.
The court’s statement did not actually address the issue of live recordings, merely providing directions where interested parties will be able to access the audio files and transcripts.
According to the AP, the court’s announcement is similar to the decision over the case of Bush v. Gore in 2000, which clinched George W. Bush’s election as president. It was the first time the justices provided audio of the arguments the same day they were held, after denying requests for the proceedings to be aired live.