Pence comes out swinging in support of Clarence Thomas
Former Vice President Mike Pence defended Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas from what he called malicious attacks against the conservative Black jurist.
"Ever since his nomination to the Supreme Court in 1991 Justice Thomas has been maliciously attacked by the Left, including by then Sen. Joe Biden," Pence said in a tweet.
"The attacks on his character are continuing today, and it’s appalling to see," Pence continued.
Thomas has faced criticism for a series of reported breaches of Supreme Court ethics. The criticisms stemmed from a ProPublica report showing he had received gifts from Republican mega-donor Harlan Crow and did not report them. Thomas' defenders say he has complied with the court's reporting guidelines.
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As Democrats and media figures called for reforms, Rhode Island Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse went as far as to call for a Justice Department investigation into the matter. But Pence called on Americans to defend the conservative justice.
"I stand with Justice Clarence Thomas and call on every American to join me in defending this good man and principled jurist."
"Clarence Thomas is a man of integrity with an inspiring personal story and has upheld the ideals enshrined in our Constitution throughout his life without compromise," Pence said. "Our Nation is fortunate to have Justice Thomas serving on the Highest Court of the Land. God bless Justice Clarence Thomas."
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A follow-up report published on ProPublica Thursday revealed that Thomas' great-nephew, whom Thomas and his wife had taken into their care in 1997, had his tuition paid for by Crow at two private schools. The story says Crow paid for tuition for one year at Hidden Lake Academy in Georgia and one year at Randolph-Macon Academy in Virginia.
President Biden was chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee in 1991 when Anita Hill accused Thomas of sexual harassment during his Supreme Court confirmation process. Thomas denied the allegations, and he was eventually confirmed with the support of 41 Republicans and 11 Democrats in the Senate.
Fox News' Joe Schoffstall and Brianna Herlihy contributed reporting.