It took a while, but Associate Justice Clarence Thomas filed disclosure forms yesterday that revealed at least some of the benefits he received from billionaire benefactor Harlan Crow, along with some six-figure bank accounts that Thomas claims he "inadvertently omitted" from past disclosures. Uh, huh.
The new disclosures only cover the last year, and do not correct the record for the veritable treasure chest of goodies Thomas has gotten from Crow and others in the past. On filing the paperwork, Thomas might plausibly have shown some contrition, saying he regretted the errors and that he would make sure to get his disclosures right in the future. But that is not how he rolls. So instead, he circulated a memo among friendly media members asserting that he is a victim of left-wing groups that have "weaponized" ethics against him. Yes, those pesky ethics. No purpose to them except as a political cudgel.
Thomas is almost certainly above the law here, since there's zero chance of his being impeached and removed. That said, he's clearly feeling at least a little pressure due to the reporting from ProPublica and others. Does Harlan Crow not like being under the microscope? Is Chief Justice John Roberts twisting Thomas' arm? Is there still some doozy in the closet that Thomas is trying to get out ahead of? We don't know, but it remains the case that when he leaves the Supreme Court, it will likely be on his back. (Z)