Don’t judge Clarence Thomas for his wife’s actions

“We are well past the day when it is assumed that a wife’s opinion is the same as her husband’s.”

So argued Stefan Giller, Law professor at New York University, in 2013. If the professor’s name sounds familiar to you, it’s because he’s been quoted by seemingly every major media outlet since last week sent the message from Virginia Thomas, wife of Judge Clarence Thomas became SMS to Donald Trump White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows urged him to contest the 2020 election results.

The Los Angeles Times described Mr. Gillers as “a scholar of legal ethics,” and The New York Times called him “one of the nation’s leading experts on legal ethics.” But it turns out that the professor’s ethics are very similar of the Liberal Democrats are situational these days. In 2013, he defended a decision by the late Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals Judge Stephen Reinhardt not to retire from a case involving the American Civil Liberties Union, even though Reinhart’s wife, Ramona Ripston, had served as executive director of the ACLU South -California.

“MS. Ripston’s opinions, views and public statements in support of the district court’s opinion . . . no reasonable basis on which to question Judge Reinhardt’s ability to honor his oath of office,” a friend of the court claimed on behalf of Mr. Gillers and four others.”A contrary finding would render a judge’s spouse unfit to practice law, which would be tantamount to a marriage penalty.”

Reinhardt had a well-deserved reputation as one of the most liberal judges at one of the most liberal appellate courts in the nation. That may explain why Mr Gillers and his partisan allies have changed their minds. “‘Don’t ask, don’t tell’ is not an acceptable strategy for the Thomases’ marriage,” he now tells reporters. “Both have crossed a line and deserve no doubt.”

District Judge Stephen R. Reinhardt listens to arguments during a hearing at the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco.  Judge Reinhardt
Judge Stephen R. Reinhardt’s wife was executive secretary of an ACLU chapter.
AP Photo/Eric Risberg, pool, file

To those who don’t wear ideological blinders, Judge Thomas and When in doubt, his wife earns the same amount as Reinhardt and his wife. And there are other examples. Judge Cornelia Pillard of the US Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia is married to David Cole, the ACLU’s national legal director. The husband of Sixth Circuit Judge Alice Batchelder served as Speaker of the Ohio House of Representatives. Marjorie Rendell was an appellate judge when her husband Ed was Governor of Pennsylvania and chair of the Democratic National Committee. When these judges had to withdraw from a case because of a conflict of interest, they were trusted to do so.

facts and fiction

Justice Thomas’ critics want to hold him less to a higher standard than to another. Important cases of abortion, gun control, positive action and freedom of religion are on the High Court’s agenda this year. The aim of the left is to reduce its influence – and with it the influence of the conservative wing of the court. And since the target is Judge Thomas, who has been driving his ideological opponents insane for the past 30 years, the view is that anything goes.

Clarence Thomas, Associate Supreme Court Justice, sits with his wife and conservative activist Virginia Thomas as he waits to address the Heritage Foundation October 21, 2021 in Washington, DC.
Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, as the longest-serving member of the court, has earned the benefit of the doubt.
Drew Angerer/Getty Images
Virginia “Ginni” Thomas is accused of urging former White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election.
AP Photo/Susan Walsh, file

“The facts here are clear,” Senator Amy Klobuchar told ABC News on Sunday. “You have the wife of a sitting Supreme Court Justice who is campaigning for this for an uprising.” No, that’s not the facts, unless the senator knows something the rest of us don’t. No evidence has been released that Mrs. Thomas incited violence or had anything to do with the looting of the Capitol by Trump supporters. To lump them together with those who did it is slander. All we know is that she urged Mr. Meadows to “stand firm” against what she believed to be “election robbery.” If a case comes to court involving Ms. Thomas or her activities, Judge Thomas may make a denial decision at that time.

Perhaps even more disturbing is Ms. Klobuchar, who is sitting on the Senate Judiciary Committee, sounded like she was threatening Chief Justice John Roberts to comply with the wishes of her Congressional Democrats. “All I hear right now is silence from the Supreme Court and that better change in the coming week,” she said. “Not just should [Justice Thomas] retire, but this Supreme Court is in dire need of ethics rules.”

Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., questions Supreme Court nominee Ketanji Brown Jackson during a Senate Judiciary Committee confirmation hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, March 23, 2022.
Sen. Amy Klobuchar sparks a witch hunt against Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas and his wife Virginia.
AP Photo/Alex Brandon
White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows
Virginia “Ginni” Thomas allegedly sent text messages to Mark Meadows, the former White House chief of staff, on November 10, 2020.
AP Photo/Patrick Semansky, file

The Chief Justice has made it clear that he cares deeply about the Court’s reputation. One way to tarnish that reputation would be to bow to the politics and passions of the day, as the likes of Ms Klobuchar are suggesting.

Clarence Thomas is the longest serving member of the Court and has consistently followed its case law for decades. We trust judges to act professionally and with integrity when it comes to denial decisions, and Judge Thomas has earned our trust.

https://nypost.com/2022/03/30/dont-judge-clarence-thomas-for-wifes-acts/ Don’t judge Clarence Thomas for his wife’s actions


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