Democrats hate conservative Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas and therefore were quick to seize upon a left-wing publication's recent report about his close friendship with a Republican megadonor as a potential opportunity to try and oust him from his seat on the high court's bench.
Progressive Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) is one of those Thomas-hating Democrats outraged by the report who has now called for him to be impeached and removed and even offered to draft the requisite articles of impeachment to do so herself, Fox News reported.
On Thursday, shortly after the article about Justice Thomas was published, Rep. Ocasio-Cortez appeared on the "Lever Time" podcast where the story was referenced by host David Sirota, a journalist and political pundit, who described the piece as an almost cartoonish "caricature of corruption" and asked if she personally would draft articles of impeachment as well as if her fellow House Democrats would support the effort at removal.
"I mean, listen, I think this is an emergency. I think that this is a crisis. I think that we've had a crisis for some time on the Supreme Court," the congresswoman replied. "To get to the heart of your question, we -- Congress is out of session for the next week. And so that does give Democrats some time to strategize, and the way I feel about it is that, I do think articles need to be introduced."
"If we decide strategically that the actual author of those articles and who introduces them may not be me, that's fine, I will support impeachment," she continued. "But I just think that if no one's going to introduce it, I would certainly be open to doing so and drafting them myself."
Ocasio-Cortez added, "I think this has gone far, far beyond any sort of acceptable standard in any democracy, let alone American democracy."
🚨NEWS: On LEVER TIME, @AOC says House Dems must file articles of impeachment against Clarence Thomas, and says she will draft them if others do not step up.
Full episode comes out tomorrow.
— The Lever (@LeverNews) April 6, 2023
The article referenced by the pundit and the congresswoman came from the left-leaning ProPublica and essentially accused Justice Thomas of improperly failing to disclose lavish "gifts" he had received over the past couple of decades from a close and personal friend, Harlan Crow, who is an ultra-wealthy real estate developer from Texas who financially supports numerous conservative causes and organizations, particularly with regard to the judicial system.
The purported "gifts" that Thomas failed to disclose are, in essence, annual vacations that he and his wife have gone on with Crow and his wife, as well as other friends, that include flights on Crow's private jet and trips on Crow's superyacht to places that include an exclusive resort in California, Crow's ranch in Texas, Crow's private estate in upstate New York, and even locations in Indonesia and Europe.
For what it is worth, Crow said in a statement that the alleged undisclosed "gifts" were not gifts at all but merely his "hospitality" that is "no different from the hospitality we have extended to our many other dear friends," but the outlet noted that some ethics experts disagree and argue that any other elected or appointed federal official would face serious trouble if the trips on the private jet and yacht weren't properly disclosed.
Fox News reported that Justice Thomas issued a statement in response to the ProPublica article and said the Crows were "among our dearest friends," and that "As friends do, we have joined them on a number of family trips during the more than quarter century we have known them."
"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," he continued. "I have endeavored to follow that counsel throughout my tenure, and have always sought to comply with the disclosure guidelines."
"These guidelines are now being changed, as the committee of the Judicial Conference responsible for financial disclosure for the entire federal judiciary just this past month announced new guidance. And, it is, of course, my intent to follow this guidance in the future," Thomas added.
That explanatory statement, however, seems unlikely to mollify Thomas' many Democratic critics who in addition to calling for his impeachment and removal have also discussed passing legislation to impose strict new ethical reporting requirements as well as term limits on the entire Supreme Court bench.