By Darragh Roche
Critics have slammed Virginia “Ginni” Thomas and her husband, Supreme Court Associate Justice Clarence Thomas, after she said in an interview that she had briefly attended a rally in Washington, D.C. on January 6, 2021 before the Capitol riot unfolded.
Thomas told The Washington Free Beacon in a recently published interview that she attended the rally near the White House but “played no role” in planning the event. She said she left the rally early because she got cold.
Thomas, an attorney and conservative activist, also stressed that she does not involve her husband in her work but many critics took to social media and piled pressure on Justice Thomas, with some suggesting he should be investigated or impeached.
Noah Bookbinder, president of Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW), took to Twitter to highlight that Justice Thomas was the only member of the Supreme Court who voted against the release of records from the Trump White House to the House of Representatives’ Select Committee investigating January 6.
“Justice Clarence Thomas was the lone vote to block the House Select Committee from getting January 6th documents from Donald Trump,” Bookbinder wrote. “We know now that his wife participated in the Jan. 6 rally. That creates a clear appearance of bias and a possible major conflict of interest.”
Thomas was criticized at the time of that decision in January 2022 and faced calls to leave the Court.
MSNBC host Mehdi Hasan suggested that Justice Thomas could be removed from the Court.
“At what point do Dems dare to talk about impeaching Clarence Thomas?” Hasan wrote, retweeting a post about the Ginni Thomas interview.
The popular politics podcast “No Lie with Brian Tyler Cohen” weighed in on its official Twitter account, writing: “Clarence Thomas needs to be investigated immediately.”
Keisha Lance Bottoms, former Democratic mayor of Atlanta, joked about the idea of Ginni and Clarence Thomas discussing January 6.
“How did that dinner conversation go? ‘So honey, what did you do today?’” Bottoms tweeted.
USA Today opinion columnist Michael J. Stern said that Thomas should not involve himself in cases related to the events of January 6.
“If you are a Supreme Court Justice whose wife attended a rally that resulted in the January 6th Capitol attack, you should do the right thing and recuse yourself from voting on the Capitol attack cases,” Stern wrote.
Even before Ginni Thomas confirmed her attendance at the rally, some had been calling for her husband to resign.
Former Democratic congressional candidate Kim Mangone, who ran against House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, tweeted on Saturday: “Retweet if you think Clarence Thomas is compromised and should resign from the Supreme Court.”
Lindy Li, a delegate for President Joe Biden in the 2020 Democratic presidential race, wrote on Friday: “Clarence Thomas should recuse himself or better yet resign.”
In her interview, Ginni Thomas said she “played no role with those who were planning and leading the January 6 events” and refuted reports of her involvement in the planning. She also addressed her relationship with her husband and her political activism.
“Like so many married couples, we share many of the same ideals, principles, and aspirations for America,” she said. “But we have our own separate careers, and our own ideas and opinions too. Clarence doesn’t discuss his work with me, and I don’t involve him in my work.”
Thomas said she was in the crowd at the Ellipse on the morning of January 6 but left before then President Donald Trump spoke. She said she was “disappointed and frustrated that there was violence that happened following a peaceful gathering of Trump supporters.”