Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), the top lawmaker on the Senate Judiciary Committee, stated that the panel was going to look into the allegations that Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas had received gifts from a billionaire Republican donor over the past few decades.
According to the reports, over the past few decades, Thomas had accepted luxury trips and outings on yachts and private jets provided by the Dallas businessman Harlan Crow. These gifts were reported by ProPublica who conducted an investigation on these trips. According to the investigation Thomas had not disclosed these travel gifts.
Crow is known for his donations to Republican candidates. In a statement, Durbin said that the report was a “call to action” for lawmakers and that it was clear that the Supreme Court Justices also needed a code of ethics. As he noted it was not right for the “highest court” to have “the lowest ethical standards” and yet, the report once again showed the need for “an enforceable code of conduct.”
While it is not yet clear what action the committee can take, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) has called for the justice to be impeached. As she wrote on Twitter despite which party one belongs to “This degree of corruption is shocking — almost cartoonish.”
Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.) also called for an investigation following the report’s revelations.
Crow in a statement did not deny that both Thomas and his wife had accepted his gifts but claimed that the two had never requested them.