Republicans blasted House Speaker Nancy Pelosi for saying Thursday that Clarence Thomas — the Supreme Court’s only black member — never should have gotten the job.
Pelosi (D-Calif.) was asked by a reporter at a Capitol press conference if Thomas, 73, should resign for not recusing himself from 2020 election cases while his wife, Ginni, pushed allegations that fraud helped President Biden win.
“I don’t think he should have ever been appointed,” Pelosi replied.
The House speaker went on to say that Ginni Thomas, who attended a rally near the White House that preceded last year’s Capitol riot on Jan. 6, 2021, is “an admitted and proud contributor to a coup of our country” and that the justice “should weigh” that in deciding whether to recuse himself from cases.
Many Republicans responded by pointing out that Democrats blasted their recent questioning of President Biden’s pending Supreme Court nominee, Ketanji Brown Jackson, who would be just the third black justice in the court’s history — and the first black woman.
Abigail Marone, press secretary for Sen. Josh Hawley (R-Mo.), who led the Senate Judiciary Committee’s grilling of Jackson, tweeted, “But I was reliably informed that it was racist to oppose a Black SCOTUS nominee…”
Harrison Fields, press secretary for Rep. Byron Donalds (R-Fla.), noted that a progressive commentator claimed that critics of Jackson threatened her safety by raising objections to her sentencing decisions in child pornography cases.
“We need MORE Clarence Thomases and less KBJs,” wrote Fields, who is black.
The Republican staff on the House Judiciary Committee tweeted, “Pelosi should have never been Speaker, and won’t be much longer. Stand with Justice Thomas!”
Political commentator Guy Benson also took a whack at Pelosi, writing, “This racist white woman is putting a strong Black man’s life at grave risk. (Am I doing this right?)”
Jackson is expected to be confirmed by a largely party-line vote to replace retiring Justice Stephen Breyer. Thomas was confirmed to the lifetime position in 1991 after bruising confirmation hearings focused on sexual harassment allegations brought by his onetime subordinate, Anita Hill.