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Scalia, Thomas Stop Pretending What Side They Are On With Health Care Challenge

Scalia, Thomas Stop Pretending What Side They Are On With Health Care Challenge

Behind yesterday’s big news of the Supreme Court agreeing to hear a legal challenge to the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act was another story: just who is influencing the justices?

The same day the court granted review, Justices Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas were treated to a black-tie dinner by the law firm that will argue the case before them. The firm, Bancroft PLLC, was one of a dozen or so firms to sponsor the annual dinner for the hard-right Federalist Society. Another sponsor, the firm Jones Day, represents one of the trade groups that also brought the challenge.

It gets better. Yet another sponsor was big pharma representative Pfizer Inc. And not only did the justices attend, so too did Senator Mitch McConnell, the key congressional member driving the political challenges to the bill.

It would be one thing if the noted conservative justices were simply guests. But they weren’t. They were the featured guests.

Justice Thomas’ questionable ethics surrounding health care reform range from failing to disclose his wife’s income lobbying against the bill to refusing to refrain from attending high profile events paid for by the Koch brothers. Some might call the dinner and the petition grant an unfortunate coincidence, but others, like Bob Edgar of the good governance group Common Cause call it something else.

“This stunning breach of ethics and indifference to the code belies claims by several justices that the court abides by the same rules that apply to all other federal judges,” said Bob Edgar, the president of Common Cause. “The justices were wining and dining at a black-tie fundraiser with attorneys who have pending cases before the court. Their appearance and assistance in fundraising for this event undercuts any claims of impartiality, and is unacceptable.”

We’ll know this summer just how much influence these groups hold over the justices when their decision on the constitutionality of health care reform comes down.

Related Stories:

SCOTUS Takes On Obamacare

Clarence Thomas Has More Ethical Baggage

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Photo from joeff via flickr.

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63 comments

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4:51PM PDT on Mar 15, 2012

It is time to pull this one out of the closet since the vote could be heard within weeks.

We need to publicize this to nth degree!!!!

3:03PM PST on Nov 20, 2011

There is no conscience among those who put their personal views above all else. Money has become their God and wealth/power their religion. We have S/C members pandering to wealth, elected members of congress pandering to wealth, governors pandering to wealth, presidential candidates professing religious beliefs and then pandering to those who have no morals or patriotism. We even have our elected congressmen and women taking a no tax pledge to Grover Nordquist, and then giving that pledge priority over their pledge to defend our constitution. Can anybody see anything wrong with this picture? Education is a key, but it does little good to learn to read if one never reads our constitution and its preamble or the Bible. We do really reap what we sew.

4:18PM PST on Nov 19, 2011

Well, at least we can say that both Justices Scalia and Thomas did not work on creating Obamacare like Elena Kagan did. She needs to recuse herself since she was assigned Solicitor General under Obama and helped facilitate the passage of Obamacare. If she does not recuse herself, this is corruption and she needs to be impeached.

11:34AM PST on Nov 17, 2011

It looks like there will have to be some OWS action against the SC. They seem to be beyond the law.

9:48AM PST on Nov 17, 2011

Noted.

7:04AM PST on Nov 17, 2011

SCrOTUS is a sham....

2:42AM PST on Nov 17, 2011

Thomas should be impeached for lying on his tax form, and he and his wife's heavy duty involvement with the tea party and the kochroach brothers. Scalia is a kochroach enthusiast, hence his special place of importance at their fundraiser. This must be stopped or our Supreme Court will (already is) the laughing stock of the world. They will never do the right thing, so America is screwed. (un)justice Robert's will go down in history as the WORST Court in the history of the United States. We must do something!

10:07PM PST on Nov 16, 2011

Scalia, Thomas and Kagan should all recuse themselves as they have already taken strong positions on this.

9:26PM PST on Nov 16, 2011

Why do we tolerate this malfeasance amongst the so-called "justices" on our highest court?

8:58PM PST on Nov 16, 2011

Marilyn T. I guess you only approve Health care for the rich! Breast cancer effects all classes. You are a hypocrite!

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