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The U.S. Supreme Court. The U.S. Supreme Court building, Washington, D.C. (Photo: Diego M. Radzinschi/ALM)

Every odd-numbered year, during the mid-March open government festival called “Sunshine Week,” members of Congress introduce bills that would require the U.S. Supreme Court and lower federal courts to broadcast their proceedings live to the public. This year has been no different.

It’s a worthy endeavor, but it obscures the fact that a lack of live broadcast is not, by a long shot, the most hazardous transparency deficit that faces the federal judiciary today. This is especially true in 2021, when the U.S. Supreme Court and all 13 federal appeals courts offer live audio access to their hearings.

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