Ari Melber Calls Out Clarence Thomas for ‘Lying to Everyone’ About ‘Billionaire Lifestyle’: ‘You Think You’re Above the Law?’ (Video)
As more and more lavish gifts to Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas from billionaire Republican donor Harlan Crow are being unearthed, Ari Melber, host of MSNBC’s “The Beat” and chief legal correspondent, took an opportunity to call out Thomas directly — and bluntly — on Thursday.
“Do you think you will get away with this forever?” the MSNBC host asked, looking down the camera.
In early April, Propublica reported that for more than 20 years, Thomas was treated to expensive luxury vacations by Texas billionaire Harlan Crow. The issue is, Thomas never once reported said gifts on his financial disclosures. Then, a few weeks later, it was revealed that, in 2014, Thomas made more than $130,000 when he sold several properties to Crow — an amount far in excess of their value. This included the house Thomas’ mother currently lives in.
The story has continued developing though, as it has now been revealed that Crow has also apparently been paying the tuition of Thomas’ nephew, which is more than $60,000 a year.
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“There’s no functional difference between handing someone a million dollars in cash and giving them a million dollars worth of stuff that they would want to buy anyway,” Melber said on Thursday night.
But, what the host took larger issue with is how Thomas has failed to report these things while simultaneously claiming he’s more comfortable with modest living.
“This isn’t the most important part, but boy is it telling Clarence Thomas — who oversees lower courts that literally decide whether people live or die on death row and a host of other important issues — went around knowing all this and lying to everyone to pass himself off as some kind of everyman,” Melber sniped.
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To back up his assertion, Melber played a clip of Thomas from the 2020 documentary about himself, in which the Supreme Court justice said, “I come from regular stock, and I prefer that. I prefer being around them.” That’s when Melber addressed Thomas through the camera directly.
“No, you don’t,” Melber said. “Why were you lying about it? Were you feeling guilty? Were you also lying to your colleagues on the Supreme Court? Do you think you’re above the law? Do you think you will get away with this forever? Have you ever looked at the history, where if you cross enough lines, even as a Supreme Court justice, you can end up, depending on the history, impeached or on trial?”
You can watch Melber’s full comments in the video above.
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