In recent weeks, Democrats increased their criticism of conservative Supreme Court Justices such as Clarence Thomas and Neil Gorsuch. They alleged corruption and used that as a justification for congressional oversight.
These accusations, however, are without any legal or ethical basis. Justice Thomas was accused by some of failing to report free travel expenses that he received from a close friend, which he wasn’t even required to declare. He was also accused of a technical error when it came time for income reporting. Justice Gorsuch is accused of selling a piece of land to a lawyer executive who had pending business with the Supreme Court. However, he sold the property shortly after confirming his confirmation and the buyer did not have any business at that time.
The Democrats who called for DOJ investigations, impeachment, and other actions will likely sing a different song when they learn that Sonia Sotomayor, a liberal justice, accepted $3.6 million in payment from Penguin Random House Publishing, even though the company had a case before the court. She also refused to recuse herself.
The Daily Wire reported that, in addition to the $3.6m advance (on which Penguin Random House lost money), Sotomayor had received annual payments totaling more than $500,000. In 2013, she voted on a Random House case, despite the fact that her then-fellow Justice Stephen Breyer had recused himself from voting after receiving money. Sotomayor, in 2020, received a check for $10,586 from Penguin Random House, the same day that a lawsuit was filed against the publisher before the Supreme Court. In February 2020, the Court voted to not hear the case. Sotomayor then received her biggest payment ever from the publisher.
The media have been attacking conservative justices over alleged financial misconduct including failing to disclose free trips. However, Justice Sotomayor failed to disclose six travels funded by outside groups during 2016. She did not face any media scrutiny or the anger of Democrats.
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., should call for the impeachment Sotomayor as she did with Thomas, if Democrats are serious about their attacks against Thomas and Gorsuch and the need for congressional oversight over the Supreme Court. Richard Blumenthal, a Democrat from Connecticut, should have called for the Department of Justice’s investigation of Sotomayor as he had done for Thomas.
You and I both know that they will not. Politics, not ethics or corruption was the reason for the attacks on Thomas and Gorsuch. They are angry because the court does not vote as they would like, and want to remove conservative justices.