WASHINGTON — Despite a broadcast report that it was about to strike down a key provision of the Gramm-Rudman law requiring a balanced budget by 1991, the Supreme Court issued no ruling today on the constitutionality of the deficit-reduction statute.
ABC News reported Sunday that the court would announce in a 7-2 ruling this morning that the legislation violates the constitutional separation-of-powers doctrine.
The court had announced previously it would hand down three decisions today. But it announced only two, neither involving the Gramm-Rudman balanced budget law.
Asked for comment after today's decisions were announced, ABC News Washington bureau chief George Watson said the network stood behind its report.
"Tim O'Brien also pointed out in his report last night that the decision had been made, and was scheduled to be made today, and that, in the past, leaks had caused the court to delay the scheduled announcement," Watson said.
The network had reported that the court was about to announce a decision striking down the law's provision giving important powers to the comptroller general, an officer of Congress.
The last time any significant leaking from the Supreme Court occurred was in 1978, when ABC carried leaked reports over a period of two weeks.
After those leaks, an employee of the Supreme Court's print shop was transferred to another job.