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Government watchdog group calls for Clarence Thomas resignation


Continued controversy surrounding Supreme Court justice

Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW), which is what’s known as a government watchdog organization, is calling–in a recent letter addressed directly to him–for U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas to resign.

Thomas has recently faced a cascade of news reports outlining his financial entanglements with Harlan Crow, an ultra-wealthy supporter of Republican causes. The wave started with revelations from the news outlet ProPublica about pricey travel Crow made available to Thomas and his wife, Ginni, and also revealed that Crow paid for tuition for a family member of the judge! (At least, that’s what’s apparent.) Crow also made several property purchases involving Thomas, including the procurement of a family residence where the judge’s mother has potentially been living without paying any rent and where reports indicated significant renovations have been undertaken.

CREW says the serious concern in this situation is that these ties could facilitate the development of undue favor from Thomas, whose decisions could affect the lives of hundreds of millions of Americans at a time as one of just nine members on the nation’s highest court.

CREW spotlighted the need for at least a basic level of trust in the Supreme Court’s handling of itself in how American democracy is generally expected to function, and how can such a thing be furthered if Thomas is accepting these pricey means of support, sometimes without needed disclosures? In connection to the established demands for financial disclosures, CREW’s Noah Bookbinder also accused Thomas of likely violating civil and criminal rules.

“We know of no other modern justice who has engaged in such extreme misconduct,” Bookbinder added. “Justice Thomas’s actions are so far beyond what most would consider acceptable, that by continuing to sit on the highest court in the land, Thomas does nothing but further diminish the Court’s credibility.”