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More than 100 ex-Clarence Thomas clerks sign letter defending his integrity

The group outlined Thomas's professional and personal history and acknowledged his impact on their on lives.

Published: August 29, 2023 3:43pm

More than 100 former clerks for Supreme Court  Associate Justice Clarence Thomas have signed on to a letter defending his integrity and judicial independence amid ongoing criticism of him over his longstanding relationship with a GOP megadonor.

Earlier this year, reports highlighted Harlan Crow's financing of joint luxury vacations with the Thomases, which the justice did not disclose. Thomas has denied any wrongdoing. Additional reporting revealed that Crow had paid for the education of one of their relatives.

"As his law clerks, we offer this response. Different paths led us to our year with Justice Thomas, and we have followed different paths since," they wrote, according to Fox News. "But along the way, we all saw with our own eyes the same thing: His integrity is unimpeachable. And his independence is unshakable, deeply rooted seven decades ago as that young child who walked through the door of his grandparents’ house for a life forever changed."

The group outlined Thomas's professional and personal history and acknowledged his impact on their on lives.

"His grandfather's sayings become our sayings. His chambers become our chambers – a place fueled by unstoppable curiosity and unreturned library books, all to get every case just right," they continued. "And yet, the stories most often told of Justice Thomas are not these. The Justice is ever the subject of political headlines taking aim at his character, his judicial philosophy, his marriage, even his race. They attempt to write over his actual story."

Scrutiny of Thomas, along with recent reports involving Associate Justice Samuel Alito, has fueled calls from the political left to reform the Supreme Court and to require that it formulate ethics guidelines regarding disclosures.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has defended Thomas amid the push for reform legislation and asserted that Chief Justice John Roberts is able to adequately address any ethics issues.

"Look, the Supreme Court, in my view, can’t be dictated to by Congress. I think the chief justice will address these issues," he said in June. "Congress should stay out of it, because we don’t, I think, have the jurisdiction to tell the Supreme Court how to handle the issue."

Ben Whedon is an editor and reporter for Just the News. Follow him on Twitter.

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