Can A Supreme Court Justice Be Impeached?

By Donald A. Collins | 22 May 2022
Church and State

Justice Clarence Thomas. (Credit: YouTube / screengrab)

The answer is yes, and one Justice was impeached ONCE. But he was not convicted and served on the Court until he retired.

From the History web site: “In 1804, the U.S. House of Representatives voted to impeach Associate Justice Samuel Chase. A signer of the Declaration of Independence, Chase was appointed to the U.S. Supreme Court by President George Washington in 1796. A Federalist, Chase irked Thomas Jefferson and his Republican allies in Congress, and was impeached on politically motivated charges of acting in a partisan manner during several trials. However, in 1805 Chase was acquitted by the Senate, a decision that helped safeguard the independence of the judiciary. He served on the court until his death in 1811.”

You can read the full history here.

Another question. When does the overt bias or misbehavior of one’s spouse become a basis for action against one’s mate if that mate is Justice Thomas?

That question certainly arises with the page one May 21 Washington Post story entitled “Justice’s Wife Sought new Ariz. Electors”.

The outrageous and clearly illegal behavior in this instance of Virginia “Ginni” Thomas should have induced her husband, Justice Thomas to recuse himself from the Mississippi abortion case which will likely kill Roe/Casey and send millions of young poor women to dangerous abortion options.

The Post tells us, “Virginia “Ginni” Thomas, the conservative activist and wife of Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, pressed Arizona lawmakers after the 2020 election to set aside Joe Biden’s popular-vote victory and choose “a clean slate of Electors,” according to emails obtained by The Washington Post.

The emails, sent by Ginni Thomas to a pair of lawmakers on Nov. 9, 2020, argued that legislators needed to intervene because the vote had been marred by fraud. Though she did not mention either candidate by name, the context was clear.

Just days after media organizations called the race for Biden in Arizona and nationwide, Thomas urged the lawmakers to “stand strong in the face of political and media pressure.” She told the lawmakers that the responsibility to choose electors was “yours and yours alone” and said they had “power to fight back against fraud.”

Thomas sent the messages via an online platform designed to make it easy to send prewritten form emails to multiple elected officials, according to a review of the emails, obtained under the state’s public-records law.”

The takeaway point here: Mrs. Thomas likely committed a felony in trying to impede the transfer of power to a duly elected President at the end of Trump’s term.

You can read the full article here.

Bias is obviously something we all can be guilty of, but decisions based on bias which ignore historical precedence means Justices are legislating from the bench and ignoring, in this contentious Roe case, the treasured concept of Stare decisis!

The fact in our secular democratic republic that a biased Justice’s wife would work to stop the transfer of power in the 2020 Presidential election won by a 7 million vote margin and certified by all jurisdictions as legally counted, goes well beyond bias into criminal behavior.

Does being married to a convicted felon and aware of her crimes constitute grounds for Thomas’ impeachment?

Despite his apparently obvious intent to back the Alito brief, Justice Thomas gets a pass despite his apparent lying about his sexual assaults on Professor Anita Hill at his 1991 confirmation interrogation. Professor Hill continues to stand by her allegations. We can all recall Justice Brett Kavanaugh’s over the top denial of his alleged sexually inappropriate behavior with Christine Blasely Ford.

Ironically, we now have two sexual deniers apparently ready to vote no relief for women who choose abortions.

You would think they would be pro-choice in case such sexual dalliances could result in an unwanted pregnancy.

As we know, over 50 percent of all US pregnancies are unintended.

This likely coming decision to kill Roe is abhorrent to 70 percent of Americans. Such a foul choice would bespeak the feckless, insensitive indifference of the majority of our highest court to the health, welfare and tranquility of our democratic future.

Is killing Roe racist? Of course, since the Supreme Court, in taking on a legislature function, would be discriminating against a whole class of citizens, namely WOMEN!!

Not unique after Chief Justice Taney’s 1857 Supreme Court Dred Scott decision which took a previously freed slave back into slavery.

Mr. Scott died shortly after the Court’s historically flawed decision. After 49 years of allowing women to avoid the dangerous slavery of no choice, isn’t that situation exactly replicating the Dred Scott decision?

Isn’t that putting women back in slavery after they had been given the freedom of choice for so long?? Of course.

While neither of the accused sexual abuser Justices (Thomas and Kavanaugh) caused a pregnancy, we must wonder what they or in Kavanaugh’s case his parents might have done to help these women seek an abortion to avoid facing a reputational stain at an inopportune time.

Many anti-abortion women have eschewed choice but still had an abortion and afterwards gone back to the protest lines in front of clinics.

Most Americans find very abstract the concept that all 50 states should decide individually on abortion rights. I think that needs amplification which I will soon offer in another Op Ed.

70 percent of us want choice as it is now. The anti-abortion zealots—including many in the Catholic Church, many are males seeking political office—are happy apparently to ignore precedent, medical safety (a pregnancy is far more dangerous than an early abortion) basic humanity, and plain fairness to half our population, which will happen if these 5 Justices commit the injustice of killing Roe/Casey.

Former US Navy officer, banker and venture capitalist, Donald A. Collins, a free lance writer living in Washington, DC, has spent over 50 years working for women’s reproductive health as a board member and/or officer of numerous family planning organizations including Planned Parenthood Federation of America, Guttmacher Institute, Family Health International and Ipas. Yale under graduate, NYU MBA. He is the author of “From the Dissident Left: A Collection of Essays 2004-2013”, “Trump Becoming Macbeth: Will our democracy survive?”, “We Humans Overwhelm Our Earth: 11 or 2 Billion by 2100?”, “What Can Be Done Now to Save Habitable Life on Planet Earth?: Leaders Commit to Reduce Human Population” and “Vote”.

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