Justice Clarence Thomas on Thursday, during rare public remarks at the University of Notre Dame, warned against politicizing the Supreme Court.
Thomas, 73, also criticized some of his colleagues, without naming names, for veering into the role of politicians, saying that “[w]hen we begin to venture into the legislative or executive branch lanes, those of us, particularly in the federal judiciary with lifetime appointments, are asking for trouble.”
“The court was thought to be the least dangerous branch and we may have become the most dangerous,” he added. “It is not about winning or losing at the court, it is about the entire country and the idea of this country,” Thomas said.
The Washington Post reports:
Thomas defended the independence of the Supreme Court on Thursday and warned against “destroying our institutions because they don’t give us what we want, when we want it.” Thomas, the longest serving justice, acknowledged that the high court has its flaws, comparing it to a “car with three wheels” that somehow still works.
But he said the justices are not ruling based on “personal preferences” and suggested that the nation’s leaders should not “allow others to manipulate our institutions when we don’t get the outcome that we like.”
Thomas is the latest justice to add his voice to the mix and publicly come to the court’s defense in the face of growing criticism that the nine justices are merely politicians in robes.
Clarence Thomas says Supreme Court could be “most dangerous” branch https://t.co/RhTcIpcQ5U
— Mark S. Getzfred (@marknyt) September 17, 2021
Clarence Thomas, whose rulings in key cases mysteriously always conform with his political and partisan preferences, says the justices do not make decisions based on politics. Hahahahaha https://t.co/Sxk1VVh0v2
— Norman Ornstein (@NormOrnstein) September 17, 2021
Clarence Thomas didn’t seem too worried about “destroying our institutions” when he cast the deciding vote to make Bush president in 2000 or to gut the Voting Rights Act in 2013 or when he sat silently from 2017-2021 as Trump trashed our institutions. https://t.co/wn8ZOMx5y0
— Keith Boykin (@keithboykin) September 17, 2021
Clarence Thomas blasts media, defends Supreme Court after Texas abortion decision https://t.co/2cLVtMbrpV
— Fox News (@FoxNews) September 17, 2021
Supreme Court justices as non-political actors, according to Justice Clarence Thomas? The rhetoric is fine but the Court’s actions speak quite differently. As discussed with @donlemon and @ArevaMartin on @CNN: https://t.co/iwlJoWsk8w
— Elie Honig (@eliehonig) September 17, 2021
Absolutely ludicrous for Clarence Thomas to say he is worried about “destroying our institutions” when his wife encouraged the domestic terrorists who attacked our Capitol in an attempt to murder the Vice President and Speaker of the House. pic.twitter.com/GcJKrOreOT
— Kaivan Shroff (@KaivanShroff) September 17, 2021
Justice Thomas claiming that the Supreme Court isn’t political is nonsense and we all know it. FWIW, whenever I teach Constitutional Law and students go, “Who in the hell would write that opinion??” the answer is invariably Clarence Thomas.
— Miranda Yaver, PhD (@mirandayaver) September 17, 2021