For over a decade, Clarence Thomas, the infamous conservative judge at the American Supreme Court, was purportedly offered disguised gratuities from a real estate billionaire intimate with the Republican party.
This Thursday, the United States of America was left flabbergasted after a report published by investigative media ProPublica disclosed that a well-known North-American billionaire offered the conservative magistrate of the Supreme Court trips and cruises on luxury superyachts. This also includes flights on private jets and many other disguised gratuities.
ProPublica, the independent media center founded in 2007, is known for disclosing its investigative pieces to the American public. Some of these instances include the Navy's disaster and the Russian arms firms in the U.K.
The judge nominated in 1991 by former president George H.W Bush (reportedly) enjoyed trips to Flores (Indonesia) in July 2019, flew on a private extravagant Crow’s Bombardier Global 5000 jet, and was also offered free vacations costing up to $500,000 by Harlan Crow, a major Republican donor and baron of the American landholding business. The famous businessman provided the Judge with all those gratuities, sending a unique and unprecedented expression of generosity in the current history of the U.S. Supreme Court.
Why is it a Problem?
As the judge did not declare these gifts, he appears to be transgressing legislation enacted in the aftermath of Watergate and breaking two legal principles that were voted for in order for public trust to remain. The legislation in question requires justices and judges, as well as all legislators and administrators, to publish every gratuity they are given, especially those coming from politicized groups.
Harlan Crow’s Response
In a recent declaration, Harlan Crow admitted that he indeed provided the Magistrate with an enormous amount of gifts, but he prefers calling it a form of “hospitality,” that was no different from the one he has extended to his many other friends. Judge Thomas assured that these were only friends' trips.
Although the judge and Crow minimized the imputation that the judge neglected his moral obligations, the Supreme Court judge - who holds a prominent role of public trust - is at risk of tarnishing his image forever.
Edited by Adedamola Aregbesola
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