Yet again, there is reason to lose trust and confidence in the United States Supreme Court. This time, it is hard to know which is worse: that a Justice enjoyed a lavish vacation complete with private jet travel, courtesy of a hedge fund manager with litigation before the Court, or that the Justice anticipated the bad press with an arrogant defense of his behavior.

As reported by ProPublica, Justice Samuel Alito boarded a private jet owned by billionaire Paul Singer and flew to a fishing lodge where a stay cost in excess of $1,000 per day, for a trip organized by Leonard Leo, the ubiquitous Federalist Society leader. Leo has long been credited with an outsize role in identifying and promoting judicial candidates who meet the Society's ideological standards, including Samuel Alito.

Justice Alito neither disclosed the trip on his financial disclosure forms nor recused himself from numerous matters involving Paul Singer that came before the Court.

Instead, Justice Alito sought to defend his behavior. He claimed he was not required to disclose the private jet travel and argued that, because he filled an empty seat on the plane that would otherwise have been vacant, he did not need to report the value of the flight, spurring a new argument that ordinary travelers might try to advance to their commercial airline when they want to fly free in an otherwise empty seat.

The Justice then stated that, in his judgment, a reasonable person would not doubt his ability to rule impartially on matters involving Paul Singer, thereby deeming himself free from any recusal obligations.

The Justice is wrong. And Chief Justice John Robert's failure to respond aggressively to the credibility crisis that now engulfs his Court is becoming an ever-increasing stain on his legacy.

Earlier this year, Lawyers Defending American Democracy joined with the Project On Government Oversight to draft a proposed Code of Ethics for Supreme Court Justices. Only nine federal judges in the country have avoided being subject to an ethics code, and that must end.

Our proposal would subject the Justices and family members to stringent requirements that would close the door on lavish vacations and failures to recuse themselves. It would also provide for greater transparency from a Court that has too often shielded itself from scrutiny.

The question can no longer be whether the Supreme Court should be subject to a Code of Conduct. The answer is clearly yes. We need to move the conversation towards the identification of specific provisions. Our draft code invites that discussion.