Clarence Thomas Challenge demands his ‘inappropriate press campaign’

  • McConnell rejected calls for Clarence Thomas to withdraw from January 6-related SCOTUS cases.
  • “This performative outcry is not serious,” the GOP leader said. “This is a political hit.”
  • Several Democratic lawmakers in recent days have called for Thomas to resign from the court.

Senate Leader Mitch McConnell on Wednesday dismissed criticism of Associate Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, dismissing Democrat-led calls for the lawyer to resign or withdraw himself from Jan. 6-related cases as an “inappropriate press campaign.”

The Kentucky Republican — who voted in 1991 to confirm Thomas to the Supreme Court and played a leading role in installing three conservative lawyers to court during former President Donald Trump’s term — dismissed the concerns as a “coordinated effort to to nullify the presence of the judge on the court”.

“The left’s quest to delegitimize the Supreme Court has found its latest outlet,” McConnell said on the Senate floor. “Democrats in Washington are now trying to bully this exemplary judge of more than 30 years with full legal subjects, or all of the Court.”

Last Thursday, The Washington Post and CBS News reported on 29 text messages exchanged between former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows and Thomas’s wife, longtime conservative activist Virginia “Ginni” Thomas, in which Ginni urged Meadows to insisted on making efforts to overthrow the 2020. results of the presidential elections.

The lyrics are in the possession of the House select committee investigating the Jan. 6 Capitol riot, and the panel is expected to request an interview with Ginni, CNN reported Monday.

Since the news broke, more than two dozen Democratic lawmakers have demanded that Thomas withdraw from cases related to the January 6 uprising, raising concerns about a potential conflict of interest. Prominent legal ethics experts have also expressed concern that Ginni Thomas’ political activities pose a conflict of interest for her husband.

In particular, Democrats have been examining Thomas’ decision not to withdraw from a Supreme Court order issued two months ago, in which the Court backs Trump’s request to submit the White House data before the Jan. 6 committee. to keep as part of its investigation. Thomas was the only dissident. Thomas gave no reason for his decision, which is standard for such emergency motions reaching the Supreme Court. In addition to pushing for his denial of future January 6-related cases, Democrats have urged Thomas to issue a written statement for his dissent.

Democrats have also again called for legislation that would establish a code of ethics for Supreme Court justices. Under current law, judges decide when to withdraw from cases.

Some progressive legislators — including Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York — have called on Thomas to resign or face impeachment proceedings, which McConnell broadly rejected on Wednesday.

“For the third year in a row, far-left members of the House are talking about dusting off their party’s impeachment addiction,” he said. “Make no mistake. This performative outcry is not serious. This is a political hit, part of liberals’ long-standing quest to delegitimize the Court.”

Ocasio-Cortez on Tuesday tweeted a scathing indictment against Thomas, stating that his refusal to “retreat from cases involving his wife” required an investigation.

McConnell argued that Democrats have spent years trying to “bully” conservative judges “on the basis of false accusations about fake ethics issues or bias”. He called on Thomas to “ignore” the most recent criticisms.

“This new inappropriate print campaign is just a continuation of this well-worn pattern,” he said. “It has no foundation in Judge Thomas’s decades of impeccable service on the bench. The judge and the entire Court should feel free to ignore it.”

McConnell also criticized Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer of New York for his 2020 comments in which Democratic lawmakers said Associate Justices Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh would “pay the price” if they tried to curtail abortion rights. .

“In 2020, the Democratic Leader himself stood on the steps of the Supreme Court, threatening several sitting judges by name if they didn’t achieve the policy outcome liberals wanted,” he said.

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