House Democrats demand attorney general investigate Clarence Thomas

 August 14, 2023

The Epoch Times reported this week that five House Democrats are calling for an investigation of Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas. 

That demand came in the form of a letter sent on August 11 to Attorney General Merrick Garland signed by New York Rep. Jerrold Nadler, New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Maryland Rep. Jamie Raskin, Georgia Rep. Hank Johnson, and California Rep. Ted Lieu.

Letter cites report from ProPublica

In it, the lawmakers called attention to a report from the left-leaning news outlet ProPublica which accused Thomas of going on expensive vacations with Republican mega donor Harlan Crow.

ProPublica asserted that Thomas "has secretly reaped the benefits from a network of wealthy and well-connected patrons that is far more extensive than previously understood."

It laid out "38 destination vacations, including a previously unreported voyage on a yacht around the Bahamas; 26 private jet flights, plus an additional eight by helicopter; a dozen VIP passes to professional and college sporting events, typically perched in the skybox; two stays at luxury resorts in Florida and Jamaica; and one standing invitation to an uber-exclusive golf club overlooking the Atlantic coast."

Democrats says Thomas acted "in defiance of his duty under federal law"

The report calculated the value of Thomas' vacations to be worth "several million dollars" and contributed to "a lifestyle far beyond what his income could provide."

In response, the lawmakers urged Garland "to launch an investigation into Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas for consistently failing to report significant gifts he received from Harlan Crow and other billionaires for nearly two decades—in defiance of his duty under federal law."

"Despite this clear mandate, Justice Thomas and his wife, Virginia ‘Ginni’ Thomas–a far right activist who often champions conservative causes that come before the Court–have received non-exempt gifts of significant value from Harlan Crow without reporting the source, description, and value of such gifts over the course of at least fifteen years," they continued.

"No individual, regardless of their position or stature, should be exempt from legal scrutiny for lawbreaking," the Democrats asserted.

Thomas says he has "always sought to comply with the disclosure guidelines"

For his part, Thomas issued a statement of his own following the release of ProPublica's report in which he denied acting inappropriately.

"Early in my tenure at the Court, I sought guidance from my colleagues and others in the judiciary, and was advised that this sort of personal hospitality from close personal friends, who did not have business before the Court, was not reportable," Roll Call quoted Thomas as saying.

"I have endeavored to follow that counsel throughout my tenure, and have always sought to comply with the disclosure guidelines," he added.

" A free people [claim] their rights, as derived from the laws of nature."
Thomas Jefferson
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