When a sports team continues to be awful through the tenure of different players, coaches and general managers, it becomes apparent that the real problem is the owner. When Justice Thomas has over a decade of major ethical transgressions on reporting income, it is clear that the real problem is Justice Thomas, not some unnamed aide or accountant.

There is a double standard here, and it goes like this:

1. Justice Thomas receives well-deserved scrutiny or criticism.

2. Justice Thomas decries the scrutiny or criticism as a "high tech lynching" or other loaded term.

3. Republicans fall in line behind Justice Thomas, without any compunction about the actual awful facts.

As you noted in the Article, Justice Fortas was forced from the Supreme Court (first denied becoming Chief Justice and then forced to resign) for far less than Justice Thomas has ADMITTED to. Justice Thomas "sold" his mother's house to Harlan Crow for $113k (well above the price paid for neighboring property) and Justice Thomas's mother has continued to live in the house RENT FREE for a decade.

And, it is not just the "ick" factor. At a minimum, the largess that Harlan Crow has bestowed on Justice Thomas makes it clear to aspiring Federalist judicial candidates that your financial needs will be met, so long as you remain a "true believer."

If Justice Thomas had any honor or sense of shame, he would resign. Since I do not believe he has either, I will not hold my breath.

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Apr 18, 2023·edited Apr 18, 2023Liked by David Lat

It''s disappointing, David, that you make it seem like James Ho is the voice of the judiciary. Putting aside what one thinks of him as a judge, there's no denying that his views are near one edge of the spectrum. He doesn't speak for anyone but himself, and he talks too much for a federal judge. One reason you don't hear much from other federal judges is that principles of judicial decorum cause federal judges to be reticent. Ho doesn't care. That's not something to glorify and he shouldn't be elevated because he can't shut his mouth.

As for Kacsmaryk, it seems pretty obvious that there's a lot more to the story than what Judge Ho wants to discuss. It's not that he failed to disclose something he didn't "publish" in response to a question that asked him to disclose what he has published. It's that he removed his name from an incendiary piece of pablum, which he either wrote or co-wrote, that he knew would cause him a problem if he was seeking a judgeship or was a judge. He -- like our other judge friends who testified to Congress about how Roe was "settled law", until it wasn't the minute they had the chance to unsettle it -- was concealing the truth. He was being less than forthright. Which is suboptimal for a judge. And this less-than-forthrightness then reveals itself in his abortion pill decision, which is one of the most offensive pieces of bad faith judicial activist nonsense that disregards basic rules of jurisprudence that I've ever read.

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Apr 18, 2023Liked by David Lat

Any thoughts on Justice Thomas' involvement in the Ginger Partnership? The defunct company he listed on his returns for years after it was shuttered?

I'm with the comedians here I think. If filing returns is too complicated for Justice Thomas (as he's shown all those times before, when newspapers had to remind him of his obligations) he probably isn't suited for our highest court. This is a pattern, not a one-off. I feel no obligation to extend the presumption of good faith to someone who's done the exact same thing before ($680k on spousal income is reportable)

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Apr 18, 2023Liked by David Lat

Thank you for referencing the Taranto article in the WSJ. It seems from that article that Pro Publica was sloppy in its reporting of the judge’s disclosure by not referencing the complexities and contradictory elements in the disclosure documents and the disclosure guidelines. I however would not look to Congress for ethical guidance.

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