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Tipsheet

Ethics? Hypocritical Dems Think You Won't Notice This About Liberal Supreme Court Justices

Senate Judiciary Committee Democrats are spending their Tuesday pontificating and trotting out their usual holier-than-thou personas to try attacking originalist justices on the Supreme Court, specifically Clarence Thomas. Democrats’ hatred for Thomas, paired with an irrational desire to blow up the Supreme Court as it has been to ensure no one stands in the way of their radical legislation with pesky questions of constitutionality, is a complete sideshow aimed at distracting from Democrats many failures.

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And, as usual, Democrats are being entirely hypocritical by implying justices whose decisions they find disagreeable are somehow behaving in an "unethical" manner that fails to meet an artificial standard they have constructed — one that liberal justices don't live up to either. 

On the subject of justices taking trips that are funded by other individuals or entities, an OpenSecrets review of SCOTUS records found that justices disclosed 1,306 reimbursed trips between 2004 and 2018, meaning the practice of having travel costs covered is not rare or unusual. It's also not something that only originalist or conservative justices have done, and other justices' trips have involved parties who weren't strangers to being before the Supreme Court.

For example, in 2018, the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg took 14 reimbursed trips — the most of any justice that year — including one in which she was "provided transportation, food and lodging as a tourist and guest of billionaire Israeli businessman Morris Kahn" who "had business before the Supreme Court before" when SCOTUS "handed Kahn’s company Amdocs Limited a win in November 2017 when it declined to take up a patent-related case."

Additionally, "in 2012, Ginsburg traveled to New York to accept Glamour Magazine’s Woman of the Year award, which came with a gift bag valued at $2,500," according to The Washington Post. That is, receiving valuable items is hardly outside the realm of normalcy. 

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From 2004 to 2018, former Justice Stephen Breyer — another liberal who was nominated by President Bill Clinton — held the record for the most reimbursed trips of any sitting justice at 219, according to OpenSecrets' report.

But, you may say, the issue that makes trips problematic is when they're not reported. Well, you're in luck because liberal Justice Sonio Sotomayor let covered travel expenses go unreported. 

A 2020 public records request filed by Fix the Court revealed that Justice Sotomayor did not initially report free air travel and lodging she received to deliver the commencement address at the University of Rhode Island. That included a "$1,045 flight to Rhode Island in 2016...and the block of up to 11 rooms reserved for her, her friends and her security detail at one of the state’s nicest hotels."

Fix the Court subsequently found that Sotomayor's previous "trips to visit universities in Illinois, New Jersey, Alaska, Wisconsin and Minnesota were also omitted" from her disclosures. The Obama nominee subsequently had to amend her disclosures to note the six originally unreported situations.

Despite the fact that liberal justices hold the records for most trips in a given year in recent memory, and the most trips in a 14-year period, and they've failed to disclose reimbursed travel expenses in the past, and have enjoyed trips covered by individuals who've done business before the Supreme Court, it's only conservative justices who face calls to resign. Funny how that works, eh? 

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It's almost like Democrats just want to ensure the Supreme Court becomes a rubber stamp for radical Democrat policies and don't actually give a rip about "norms" or upholding the institutions of "our democracy." They don't, of course, it's just nice to see their hypocrisy all wrapped up with a nice little bow to show how shameless they are — and how simpleminded and uninformed they expect Americans to be in order to swallow their false pretenses. You're not supposed to know that liberal justices behave the same as those "evil" originalist conservatives.

What's more, the supposed point of Tuesday's Senate Judiciary Committee hearing is to discuss and consider ways to require justices' adherence to disclosure rules and allow more transparency for the public. But it's not really. You see, there's no level of transparency, no number of disclosure requirements, that would appease Democrats' insatiable desire to pack, abolish, or undermine the Supreme Court of the United States. 

So, without a leg to stand on when it comes to calling out one ideological wing of the Supreme Court, Democrats' latest attempt to assault the high court should be taken seriously for the threat it poses, but discounted on its merits as just another run at obliterating barriers to the left's unconstitutional policies. 

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