Judge Clarence Thomas responded in detail to reports that he failed to disclose luxury trips, a private jet and a real estate transaction with a Texas billionaire on his annual financial disclosure form released Thursday.
In an unusual move, Justice included a statement defending her trip with Harlan Crowe, a billionaire who has donated to conservative causes.
The latest financial revelations come as judges face increased scrutiny over their financial dealings and the court’s lack of an ethical code. Although judges, like other federal judges, are required to file annual reports documenting their investments, gifts and travel, judges are not bound by ethics rules, according to Chief Justice John G. They follow what Roberts Jr. referred to as a set. Basic “Ethical Principles and Practices”
Judges file funding forms each spring, and most are released in early June. But Justices Thomas and Samuel A. Alito Jr. requested 90-day extensions, according to the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts, which collects and publishes the forms. Justice Alito’s financial disclosure form was also released Thursday morning.
In his disclosure, Justice Thomas Mr. Crowe touted his decision to fly on a private jet, saying he was advised to avoid business travel after Roe v. Wade and the draft to strip the constitutional right to abortion leaked.
“Due to the increased security risk following the Dobbs opinion leak, May’s flights were on private aircraft for official travel, as the filer’s security profile recommends commercial travel whenever possible,” Judge Thomas wrote.
Justice Thomas supported his past submissions in which Mr. Not many trips with Crow and other rich friends. He wrote that “in practice, and on the advice of the Judicial Conference, he adhered to the judicial norms then in force, as did his colleagues.”
But he said, “I am continuing to work with Supreme Court officials and committee staff for guidance on whether he should revise his statements further from previous years.”
Judge Thomas acknowledged errors in his previous financial statements, including personal bank accounts and his wife’s life insurance, which he said were “inadvertently omitted from progress reports”.
Justice listed all four trips from 2022, the year covered in the form. Three trips were speaking engagements. A fourth, starting in July 2022, is Mr. in the Adirondacks. A Trip to the Gardens of Gros.
The nature of Justice Thomas’ decades-long relationship with Mr. After a series of reports by ProPublica about the extent of his generosity toward Crowe and the degree of justice he failed to convey, questions have been raised. Mr. The crow administered justice that day A series of luxurious trips, including flights on his private jet, island-hopping on his superyacht, and vacations at his estate in the Adirondacks. Mr. Even the crow He bought Neeti’s mother’s house in Savannah, Ga., and A part of private school education is included For the son-in-law of justice, he was raising.
Former Berkshire Hathaway heir David L. Other wealthy friends, including Sokol, entertained Justice Thomas. Another, Anthony Welders, wrote that at least—his motor coach—allowed the 40-foot Prevost marathon to slip away from “the frivolity you see in Washington.”
Justice Alito, for his part, acknowledged what he had in June He took a private flight on vacation In 2008, he was hosted by hedge fund billionaire Paul Singer at a luxury fishing lodge in Alaska. In subsequent years, Mr.
Both judges emphasized that gifts and travel need not be disclosed.
Judge Thomas said in an earlier statement that he had been advised that he did not need to disclose such trips because they were “private hospitality of close personal friends”.
ProPublica said Mr. Before publishing an article about his travels with Singer, Justice Alito took the unusual step of presenting a statement defending his actions. In The Wall Street Journal. He wrote that he was not required to report the travel because “judges have taken this discussion of ‘hospitality’ to mean that lodging and transportation to social events are generally not reportable gifts.” He added that he did not disclose the private flight because it was “purely a transport for a social event”.