Inside the Secret World of the Supreme Court -- that's the subtitle -- so this better be pretty revealing.
The theme of the book – not exactly a revelation, I suppose – is the growth of the conservative movement and its effect on the Court.Right: That is in no way a revelation.
I start with the birth of the Federalist Society shortly after President Reagan’s election and show how young conservatives like John Roberts and Samuel Alito were drawn to Washington and flourished there. To see that story spelled out over twenty-five years was – to me, anyway – a revelation.That's not inside the Supreme Court either. (Where, I've heard tell, it's a secret world.)
Second, the book contains the first detailed, behind-the-scenes reconstruction of what happened at the Court during Bush v. Gore – a case which obsesses and fascinates me. As time passes, I believe the significance of the case cannot be overstated.Hey, I feel like I already read that book by Jeffrey Toobin. It looked like this. How can this possibly be the "first" anything about Bush v. Gore? Specify a revelation. Jeffrey Toobin has realized, with the passage of time, that the case is really, really, incredibly important, even more important than the last time he wrote a book about it. That may be a revelation, but it's a revelation about the inside of Jeffrey Toobin's head, not the inside of the Supreme Court.
Where's my Secret World?
Third, I disclose that David Souter nearly resigned in protest over Bush v. Gore. That story, in one way, illustrates the magnitude of the case.That's it! That is the nugget from the inner sanctum. David Souter nearly resigned. Because if he had actually resigned, it wouldn't have been a secret. Good thing he thought twice and kept his seat, because otherwise there wouldn't have been any news from the Secret World.
But wait. Toobin had "interviews with the justices themselves" -- the dust jacket says. Asked about that, he says he won't say how many of the justices he interviewed. And he says some of the law clerks told him to go to hell. So that's something from the Secret World. Attempts by Toobin to gain access are met with curses.
And he did talk to Sandra Day O'Connor, albeit from outside the Secret World. Per Toobin, she's "appalled" at the Roberts Court.