The Supreme Court, which must now socially distance like the rest of us, is hearing cases for the first time via teleconferencing. This means that justices and lawyers are figuring out how to conduct virtual meetings, which also means many of them apparently have to learn where the crucial mute button is.
On Wednesday, during the Barr v. American Association of Political Consultants case, it was clear that someone had not caught up yet. Roman Martinez, an attorney representing the American Association of Political Consultants, was making his oral argument when someone—SOMEONE—flushed a toilet while he was speaking:
There is only one question to be asked: Who flush?
The first obvious choice would be Martinez, because he’s the only person who was clearly unmuted at the time. But Martinez told reporters that it was not him.
“No it was not Roman, he was mid-sentence. He was also on a landline,” a person with knowledge of the situation told VICE. “It's actually funny because he had been interviewed by The New York Times ahead of the argument and they asked him about his preparations and where he'd be making it from.”
The story checks out. According to the Times, Martinez said that he would be doing the call “from his office, alone, sitting in front of a fancy new speakerphone bought for the occasion.” This is sad, but vindicating.
Was it one of the Supreme Court Justices, most of whom are taking the call from home? Very possibly.
Was it me? No. I was not invited to the call.
Was it my editor, Maxwell Strachan? If he were the culprit and assigned me the story—all the while knowing it was him—it would be a brilliant and honestly sociopathic diversion tactic.
If you have any insight into who flushed the toilet (a hero) please reach out to email@example.com.