The Senate Judiciary Chair said Justice Clarence Thomas should withdraw himself from this

Justice Clarence called on Thomas to withdraw from the January 6 lawsuit after reports that he had exchanged texts with Ginny Thomas, chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, chairman Dick Durbin, wife of Thomas, Ginny Thomas, the then White House chief of staff. Mark Meadows, calling on him to try to overthrow the 2020 election results.

Durbin said Monday that the development “raises a serious question about the conflict of interest of Justice Thomas.”

He told reporters on Capitol Hill that “he thinks he will consider a case where his wife is often contacting the chief of staff for the president and advising him on what is ultimately going to be the case in court.” “For the good of the court, I think he should withdraw himself from these cases.”

Sources familiar with the text messages, obtained by the House Select Committee investigating the January 6 Capitol attack, confirmed their authenticity to ABC News. The content of the messages was first reported by the Washington Post and CBS News.

“Help this great president stay strong, Mark !!!” Thomas wrote a letter to Meadows on November 10 after the election officially called for Joe Biden. “You are the leader with him who has stood up for the constitutional rule of America. The majority knows Biden and the left is trying to commit the greatest robbery in our history.”

“Evil always looks like a conqueror until the king of kings is victorious,” Meadows writes. “Don’t get tired of doing good. The fight will continue. I’ve turned my career around on this. At least that’s my time in DC.”

The Supreme Court then refused to allow the committee to receive Trump’s White House record on January 6 because of only one objection to justice: Clarence Thomas.

When pressed whether the Senate Judiciary would take action or investigate the matter, Durbin said the committee would hold those discussions after dealing with Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson’s pending nomination to serve in the Supreme Court.

“We have a lot of time and a lot of reasons to debate this in the future,” Durbin said. “But for now. I want to make sure that this vacancy is filled by Judge Jackson.”

Durbin added that after Jackson’s confirmation vote “we will discuss for a lot more” but that he “has trouble saying the least by disclosing what Justice Thomas’s wife is doing.”

President Biden, meanwhile, is trying to stay out of the debate over whether Thomas should step down, saying at a White House event Monday that he would “abandon these two entities.”

“One, January 6 Committee and two Judiciary. It’s their decision, not mine, “Biden said.

The House Select Committee to Investigate Capital Attacks is also debating whether to ask Ginny Thomas for her voluntary cooperation, and is meeting Monday evening to discuss insulting Congress for refusing to accept former Trump allies Peter Navarro and Dan Scavino. Including subpona.

Sources say there are others on the panel who believe the committee should take more aggressive steps to try to strengthen its testimony through subpoenas.

With more pressure to take his position on Monday, the president was adamant.

“I told you, things go awry. That, in fact, I told you that I would not tell the judiciary what position to take or not to take. And I’m not going to instruct Congress either, “he told reporters.

Messages – more than two dozen text messages, emails and documents between Thomas and Meadows in November 2020 and one from January 10 – Meadows voluntarily handed over to the committee last year, before reversing course and deciding not to cooperate in the investigation. Taken.

Thomas did not respond to an earlier request for comment from ABC News. A spokesman for the committee declined to comment on the messages or their content.

“Some eyebrows were raised when Justice Thomas was the only one voting,” said Kate Shaw, a Supreme Court analyst at ABC News and a professor of Cardozo law. “But he didn’t explain himself, so we don’t really know why he wanted to take the case.”

Experts say there are no clear ethical guidelines governing the activities of the wife of justice, but there are rules for judges to avoid conflicts of interest. Federal law requires that federal judges withdraw from a case whenever their “neutrality may be reasonably questioned.”

ABC News’ Catherine Folders, Benjamin Siegel, Devin Dwyer, Justin Gomez and Libby Cathy contributed to this report.

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