Thomas' Secretly Accepted Trips
Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas faced criticism for secretly accepting lavish trips funded by GOP donor Harlan Crow over the past two decades and failing to report them, potentially violating federal law.
Thomas' Relationship with the Crows
Justice Thomas acknowledged he and his wife, Ginni Thomas, joined billionaire GOP megadonor Harlan Crow and his wife Kathy on several "family trips" during their 25-year friendship, describing the couple as "among our dearest friends."
Thomas' Compliance with Disclosure Guidelines
Thomas stated that he sought guidance from colleagues and judiciary colleagues early in his tenure. He was advised that personal hospitality from close friends without business before the court was not reportable. He claims to have followed this counsel and complied with disclosure guidelines.
New Guidance for Judicial Financial Disclosure
The Judicial Conference committee responsible for financial disclosure in the federal judiciary recently announced new guidance, which Thomas intends to follow.
ProPublica's Report on Thomas' Lavish Trips
ProPublica reported that Thomas had taken numerous luxurious trips funded by Crow over the past two decades without disclosing them, potentially violating federal law. The trips included vacations on Crow's superyacht and private jet and stayed at his Adirondack resort.
Ethics Controversies Plague Thomas
These revelations are the latest in a series of ethics controversies surrounding Justice Thomas, who has faced tough questions about incomplete financial disclosure forms and appearances at political gatherings of wealthy conservative donors and influencers.
Crow Defends Hospitality to Thomas
Crow defended his and his wife's hospitality to the Thomases, stating it was no different from the hospitality extended to their other dear friends.
Calls for Transparency and Accountability
Advocates for greater transparency and accountability on the court argue that these disclosures raise serious questions about the connections between conservative groups with access to Thomas and the potential for improper influence on the court.