MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO/CBS News) -- Rep. Betty McCollum is calling for U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas to resign in the wake of reports on text messages Thomas' wife, Virginia "Ginni" Thomas, exchanged with former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows regarding the 2020 presidential election.
"The actions of Justice Thomas and his wife Virginia Thomas have undermined the Constitution and weakened our democracy," McCollum said. "Virginia Thomas was in direct communication with the Trump White House in a conspiracy to undermine the peaceful transition of power from a free and fair Presidential election. Rather than disclose this conflict of interest and recuse himself from cases related to his wife's involvement in the Big Lie, Justice Thomas took part in court rulings and voted to prevent the disclosure of White House communication logs."
McCollum also said that Justice Thomas has failed to disclose his wife's income from the the political group Heritage Foundation, calling it also a failure to "meet the ethical obligations of recusal and disclosure expected of a federal judge."
McCollum said that the revelations of the last week make it so that "the American people cannot trust him to serve on the highest court of the land."
Recently, a bicameral group of Democrats called on Justice Thomas to recuse himself from future cases that come before the high court involving the Jan. 6 assault on the U.S. Capitol.
Twenty-nine text messages obtained byand the Washington Post show Ginni Thomas, a longtime conservative activist, pressured Meadows to pursue efforts to overturn the outcome of the 2020 presidential election and keep former President Donald Trump in office. In some of the messages, Ginni Thomas indicated she believed the election was stolen, and shared with Meadows baseless theories circulated online about President Biden and ballot fraud.
In one missive sent to Meadows on November 10, three days after Mr. Biden was projected the winner of the presidential election, Ginni Thomas claimed Democrats were attempting the "greatest Heist of our History."
CBS News reports that, while there is a code of ethics for the federal judiciary, it does not apply to Supreme Court justices. Additionally, though federal law dictates when a judge should step aside from proceedings, such decisions typically are to the discretion of each Supreme Court justice.
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