74 House Members ask Justice Thomas to Recuse Himself

Seventy-four House Democrats are asking Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas to recuse himself from any health care reform cases, citing reports that his wife financially benefited from efforts to repeal the legislation. »Read full story on Politico.com

Full text of letter:

The Honorable Justice Clarence Thomas
United States Supreme Court Building
1 First Street Northeast
Washington D.C., DC 20543

Dear Justice Thomas:

As an Associate Justice, you are entrusted with the responsibility to exercise the highest degree of discretion and impartiality when deciding a case. As Members of Congress, we were surprised by recent revelations of your financial ties to leading organizations dedicated to lobbying against the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. We write today to respectfully ask that you maintain the integrity of this court and recuse yourself from any deliberations on the constitutionality of this act.

The appearance of a conflict of interest merits recusal under federal law. From what we have already seen, the line between your impartiality and you and your wife’s financial stake in the overturn of healthcare reform is blurred. Your spouse is advertising herself as a lobbyist who has “experience and connections” and appeals to clients who want a particular decision – they want to overturn health care reform. Moreover, your failure to disclose Ginny Thomas’s receipt of $686,589 from the Heritage Foundation, a prominent opponent of healthcare reform, between 2003 and 2007 has raised great concern.

This is not the first case where your impartiality was in question. As Common Cause points out, you “participated in secretive political strategy sessions, perhaps while the case was pending, with corporate leaders whose political aims were advanced by the [5-4] decision” on the Citizens United case. Your spouse also received an undisclosed salary paid for by undisclosed donors as CEO of Liberty Central, a 501(c)(4) organization that stood to benefit from the decision and played an active role in the 2010 elections.

Given these facts, there is a strong conflict between the Thomas household’s financial gain through your spouse’s activities and your role as an Associate Justice of the United States Supreme Court. We urge you to recuse yourself from this case.  If the US Supreme Court’s decision is to be viewed as legitimate by the American people, this is the only correct path.

We appreciate your thoughtful consideration of this request.

Sincerely,
ANTHONY D. WEINER

Member of Congress

The signers of the letter include: Reps. Al Green, EB Johnson, Wm. Lacy Clay, Carnahan, Sheila Jackson-Lee, Karen Bass, Neal, Welch, Chu, Yarmuth, Sutton, Perlmutter, Connolly, Kucinich, Meeks, Schwartz, Doggett, Moore, Polis, Waters, Payne, Rush, Cohen, Crowley, Engel, Cicilline, Susan Davis, Sires, Doyle, Slaughter, McDermott, Velazquez, Garamendi, Carson, Capuano, Berkley, Wasserman Schultz, Tim Bishop, Barbara Lee, Courtney, DeLauro, Conyers, John Larson, George Miller, Boswell, Edwards, Capps, Becerra, Deutch, Israel, Owens, Richardson, Clarke, Hirono, Ackerman, Ellison, Grijalva, Chris Murphy, Woolsey, DeFazio, Jesse Jackson Jr, Reyes, Maloney, Andrews, Pascrell, Filner, Tonko, Fudge, Hinchey, Honda, Eshoo, Pallone, Stark.

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12 Responses to “74 House Members ask Justice Thomas to Recuse Himself”

  1. My Congressman, Mike Capuano, is already a signatory to this letter. I know we can always count on Mike to do the right thing and wish such a representative for all of you!

  2. My Congressman, Mike Capuano, is already a signatory to this letter. I know we can always count on Mike to do the right thing and wish such a representative for all of you!

  3. My Congressman, Mike Capuano, is already a signatory to this letter. I know we can always count on Mike to do the right thing and wish such a representative for all of you!

  4. YES! There is hope!!

  5. YES! There is hope!!

  6. YES! There is hope!!

  7. Isn’t it sad that there is only 74 signatories to this. Kudos to the 74 for doing what is the right thing to do.

  8. Isn’t it sad that there is only 74 signatories to this. Kudos to the 74 for doing what is the right thing to do.

  9. Isn’t it sad that there is only 74 signatories to this. Kudos to the 74 for doing what is the right thing to do.

  10. please please do something…restore my faith in my fellow man…circulate the letter again!!!

  11. please please do something…restore my faith in my fellow man…circulate the letter again!!!

  12. please please do something…restore my faith in my fellow man…circulate the letter again!!!