Or is he? I am not sure. There may be some other principle at play.
A couple of Months ago, after US Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas’s wife started up a Teabagging Outfit in D.C. called Liberty Central, I suggested that Judge Thomas may have to disqualify himself from cases where interpretation of our Blessed US Constitution was at issue.
This was so, I posited, because Tea Party Outfits have some pretty wild views on the Constitution. For example, various Tea Party Groups have called for the repeal of the 13th, 14th, 16th and 17th amendments. Certainly, involvement by a spouse of a Supreme Court Justice in a group that has shown so much overt hostility to the Blessed Constitution should cause concern to Judge Thomas and to members of the Court in general.
This participation in the tea party movement may pose a conflict of interest for the Judge or an appearance of a conflict at minimum. I’d hate for We the People to lose confidence in the High Court should Judge Thomas be the deciding vote on any case with thorny constitutional issues. The reputation of the High Court should come first. Now that I think about it, Judge Thomas should probably sit out all cases that contain Constitutional issues from now on. It would be best for all.
Judge Thomas, who may read this blog, apparently was persuaded by this argument and agreed at least in part as his Wife recently resigned from the Tea Party Group in question. Yet to be answered is whether or not Judge Thomas will disqualify himself from cases in the future which involve the constitution.
I may have an ally in my call for Judge Thomas to disqualify due to this conflict of interest. And it is Big Ed Whelan, Legal Expert at the NRO.
Whelan argues, however, the Judge Reinhardt is obligated to disqualify himself from the panel. He points out that Reinhardt's wife, Ramona Ripston, executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Southern California, reportedly consulted with the plaintiffs' lawyers about the decision to bring the case at hand.
The Code of Conduct for
Judges requires that a judge "disqualify himself ... in a proceeding in which the judge's impartiality might reasonably be questioned." How, Whelan asks, is it possible that Reinhardt's impartiality in this case couldn't reasonably be questioned when his wife took part in confidential discussions with plaintiffs' lawyers over whether they should pursue the case? United States
Big Ed notices a connection between the wife of an appellate Judge and the ruling on Prop 8 (striking down a same sex marriage ban) and calls it like he sees it. This is just how I see it with the connection between the wife of Judge Thomas, her Tea Party Group and our Blessed Constitution.
It looks like Big Ed is sure to be on Board with my suggestion that Judge Thomas should sit out or at least consider sitting out any case involving the Constitution.
Good to have you aboard, Ed.