(DCWatchdog.com) – Following the revelation of text messages Justice Clarence Thomas’s wife Ginni Thomas made about former President Donald Trump, House Democrats will be holding a hearing to ascertain the possibility of impeaching justices and Supreme Court ethics.
The text messages that spurred the hearing are messages Ginni Thomas sent to then-White House chief of staff Mark Meadows, discussing the 2020 Presidential election. In the messages, Thomas implores Meadows to “Help This Great President stand firm,” adding that Meadows is a “leader… standing for America’s constitutional governance at the precipice.”
The text messages set off a firestorm in Washington, with Democrats calling for Justice Clarence Thomas to recuse himself from decisions relating to the 2020 Presidential election and former President Trump.
However, Republicans have thrown their support behind Justice Thomas.
A memo from the chairman of the House Judiciary subcommittee, Rep. Hank Johnson (D-Ga.), distributed to members ahead of the hearing, examined potential codes of conduct the subcommittee can pursue to impose ethics requirements on Supreme Court Justices.
The memo also examines the possibility of Congress’s impeachment authority in the Constitution to regulate the conduct of Supreme Court justices. However, the note points out that “Threats or inquiries of impeachment as a means of regulating the conduct of Supreme Court justices have had varying effects.”
Only one Supreme Court Justice, Samuel Chase, has been impeached by the House. Chase was impeached in 1804, yet the Senate decided not to convict him a year later.
The memo also acknowledges that Ginni Thomas’s text messages have ignited the call for the Supreme Court to implement a code of ethics. Lawmakers began exploring this “following the reporting about text messages between the spouse of an associate justice and the then-White House Chief of Staff.”