Federalist Rips Mayer’s ‘Malicious Smears’ of Ginni & Clarence Thomas

Ginni Thomas is the wife of Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas and she has opinions about the controversies of the day and for that, The New Yorker‘s Jane Mayer thinks Clarence Thomas should recuse himself from numerous rulings, including the upcoming affirmative action cases that the Court announced that it would hear. Writing at The Federalist, attorney Mark Poaletta ripped into Mayer’s nasty hit piece and called out its false “malicious smears.”

Mayer was on MSNBC’s Deadline: White House Monday afternoon with host Nicolle Wallace to discuss the vicious article, Is Ginni Thomas a Threat to the Supreme Court?, when Wallace asked, “I want to ask you first about how prolific she is in putting things on paper, how brazen she seems to be in putting her hands all over issues that could very easily end up in front of her husband on the bench.”

Ignoring the fact that Ruth Bader Ginsburg worked for the ACLU before joining the Court, Mayer alleged:

…it’s an extraordinary situation. I don’t think we’ve ever seen anything quite like it in the history of the Supreme Court. You have the wife of one of justices who is so tangled up in so many of these explosive issues that are right before her husband’s Court and she’s not just tangled up, but she’s actually aligned herself with the activists who are bringing the suits in many, many different ways that I lay out in the story but, I mean, and for instance this, you know, the first example you gave today, it’s, it’s just kind of mind boggling, really.

In his Federalist piece, Poaletta blasted: “Mayer’s article…is full of falsehoods and distortions, consistent with the malicious and error-filled book she co-authored in 1994, ‘Strange Justice: The Selling of Clarence Thomas.’” He hammered her obvious partisan sniping: “Weaving together a mishmash of facts, conspiracies, and comments from dial-them-up liberal judicial ethics ‘experts,’ Mayer argues that Ginni Thomas’ political activities and public comments on issues that come before the court require Justice Thomas to recuse himself from those cases.”

Crying scandal on MSNBC over the fact that Ginni Thomas has opinions on controversial issues, Mayer declared: “Ginni Thomas is on the advisory committee of a group called The National Association of Scholars, it has filed an amicus brief in this case that the Court took up today that’s going to challenge the affirmative action policies of Harvard University and University of North Carolina, it’s an incredibly important case and there’s the wife of the Supreme Court justice on one of the organizations that’s involved in it, on taking one a side.”

As Poaletta called out, Mayer made her true left-wing political motivation clear as she ranted to Wallace: “…any other court, any lower court and, this, she, either the judge would have to recuse or the amicus brief would be struck….I mean it’s, it’s, it’s just not the kind of behavior that is allowed in this country except at the Supreme Court, which polices its own ethics so there’s no way to do anything about it unless you’re going to impeach a justice…”

Poaletta wasn’t buying it:

But Mayer does not really care about judicial ethics. Rather, she wants to construct a case where only Ginni Thomas has to stop her political activity or Justice Thomas has to recuse himself. She invents a new “recusal” standard that liberal judges don’t follow and misrepresents what other judges in fact do in facing the same situation as the Thomases. Call it Jane Mayer’s version of feminism in 2022: conservative women can’t speak out on issues when their husbands are judges.

He also pointed out several falsehoods in Mayer’s shoddy reporting, including this glaring error:

In one example, Mayer even falsely claims that Justice Thomas attended a luncheon, Impact Awards. Ginni Thomas emceed the event where awards were given to conservative leaders. Mayer writes that a guest at the luncheon, Jerry Johnson, who was then the president of the National Religious Broadcasters, “later recalled that the Justice sat in front of him and was a ‘happy warrior,’ pleased to be watching his wife ‘running the show.’”

Mayer’s claim is 100 percent false. Justice Thomas was not at this Impact Award ceremony. In fact, he has never attended an Impact Award luncheon ceremony. I spoke with Johnson, and he told me Justice Thomas was not at this luncheon. Moreover, Johnson told me that neither Mayer nor anyone from the magazine ever attempted to contact him to ask him if he saw Justice Thomas at this event or made these statements.

Of course Wallace never pressed Mayer on any of that because MSNBC’s only job is to be an echo chamber for the far left.

This segment was sponsored by Qunol

Here is a transcript for the January 24 show:

MSNBC Deadline: White House

1/24/2022

4:32 PM ET

NICOLLE WALLACE: I want to dive in right in, I’m going to drive the control room crazy and go all out of order, but I, I want to ask you first about how prolific she is in putting things on paper, how brazen she seems to be in putting her hands all over issues that could very easily end up in front of her husband on the bench.

JANE MAYER: Thanks Nicolle, it’s great to be able to join you. It’s, it’s an extraordinary situation. I don’t think we’ve ever seen anything quite like it in the history of the Supreme Court. You have the wife of one of justices who is so tangled up in so many of these explosive issues that are right before her husband’s Court and she’s not just tangled up, but she’s actually aligned herself with the activists who are bringing the suits in many, many different ways that I lay out in the story but, I mean, and for instance this, you know, the first example you gave today, it’s, it’s just kind of mind boggling, really. Ginni Thomas is on the advisory committee of a group called The National Association of Scholars, it has filed an amicus brief in this case that the Court took up today that’s going to challenge the affirmative action policies of Harvard University and University of North Carolina, it’s an incredibly important case and there’s the wife of the Supreme Court justice on one of the organizations that’s involved in it, on taking one a side. 

Now, any other court, any lower court and, this, she, either the judge would have to recuse or the amicus brief would be struck or there would just be a basically an outcry and, and she would have to back off. I mean it’s, it’s, it’s just not the kind of behavior that is allowed in this country except at the Supreme Court which polices its own ethics so there’s no way to do anything about it unless you’re going to impeach a justice which is really something that’s not even been attempted since 1804. So, I don’t think we’re likely to see that but it’s, it’s an incredible and at a time when all the polls show esteem for the Court, the Supreme Court is at an all-time low because many Americans think it is too politicized and they think so for reasons like this, that the Supreme Court justice’s wife is involved with all of these extreme groups. 

WALLACE: And it’s not like anyone suggesting that both people in a marriage can’t have careers in politics or activism but she’s is all over as you have reported out, the fringiest elements on the right.

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