On Thursday, April 6, 2023, Prensa Latina reported that two Democrats, namely, New York Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Senator Sheldon Whitehouse have called for the dismissal of United States Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas after he was accused of accepting lavish gifts from Dallas real estate billionaire Harlan Crow, a well-known Republican megadonor for years.

In an investigation commenced by ProPublica for over 20 years, Thomas and his wife made lavish trips and outings in yachts and private jets owned by Crow to luxury destinations such as the California resort Bohemian Grove, Crow’s ranch in Texas, Crow’s private lakeside resort in the Adirondacks and vacation in Indonesia, The magistrate did not disclose these luxury trips on his financial disclosures, which is in violation of a law that requires justices, judges, members of Congress and federal officials to disclose most gifts.

Ocasio-Cortez noted that reports on Thomas’ alleged misconduct reflect negatively on United States Chief Justice John Roberts.

In a statement, Ocasio-Cortez said, “Baring some dramatic change, this is what the Roberts court will be known for: blatant corruption, erosion of democracy, and stripping of human rights.”

Senator Sheldon Whitehouse concurred with her remarks, stating that the news demanded an impartial investigation by the country’s Supreme Court.

While not denying claims that Thomas had accepted such trips from Crow over the years, the latter claimed that the Supreme Court justice never requested gifts and said, “The hospitality we have extended to the Thomases over the years is no different than the hospitality we have extended to many other dear friends.” 

On April 7, 2023, Thomas defended the lavish trips he accepted from Crow, by saying, “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.  “I have endeavored to follow that counsel throughout my tenure, and have always sought to comply with the disclosure guidelines.”

Thomas’ justification for not disclosing the trips, according to Richard Painter, who served as George W. Bush White House’s chief ethics lawyer, “makes absolutely no sense.”

Only Thomas, out of the nine Supreme Court justices, voted in favor of a petition to overturn a state’s 2020 election results, which was supported by former President Donald Trump. And Thomas was once more the lone judge to concur with a Trump request to block the disclosure of White House documents pertaining to the Capitol seizure in January 2022. Thomas supports the revocation of other rights, including homosexual marriage.

 

Source: Prensa Latina