Justice Clarence Thomas

Just as some progress was made in demonstrating that no person is above the law (Trump’s indictment by a New York State grand jury), it has now been revealed that Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas is, if not above the law, above minimal ethical standards. For a span of over two decades, he apparently accepted and did not report, luxury vacations including travel on private jets and on a yacht paid for by a super rich real estate mogul and lavish Republican donor. I read that the rule was that if a Supreme Court Justice accepts a gift for over $415, he or she must report it. According to Glenn Kessler, the Washington Post’s fact checker, one of Thomas’s jaunts alone would have cost Thomas $500,000, if he had paid for it himself. It’s understood that justices should be allowed to maintain normal personal friendships. As Washington Post columnist Ruth Marcus writes, “Maintaining ‘normal personal friendships’ doesn’t require spending nine days touring the Indonesian islands on a private yacht with a man who has spent millions promoting conservative causes.”