Republican leaders have repeatedly incited their base to spew fallacies or commit felonies. Each time their followers are egged on, they end up with egg on their faces. This week, Republicans paid dearly for their misdeeds.
Exhibit A is Clarence Thomas and his treasonous wife, Ginni, who were publicly humiliated and exposed as frauds. For years, they have preened as morally righteous when their only loyalty is to personal pleasure and profit.
Prior to this week, we knew that Clarence Thomas had a generous Sugar Daddy, Harlan Crow, who collects Nazi memorabilia. He had provided the Thomas family with a half million dollars in free vacations on luxury yachts and private planes. Crow also bought the house Clarence Thomas’ mother lives in and refurbished it. It’s sort of like HGTV for crooks and grifters.
This week, ProPublica reported that the Sugar Daddy had paid $6,000 per month in private school tuition for Thomas’ teenage grandnephew Mark Martin.
Crow responded with an absurd statement:
“Harlan Crow has long been passionate about the importance of quality education and giving back to those less fortunate, especially at-risk youth.”
Yes, that poor, neglected young man living at the home of a wealthy Supreme Court justice. It’s practically one step removed from being a hobo. The only thing that Mark Martin was ever at risk of, was learning ethics and morality from the bribe inhaling Thomas family.
If that weren’t bad enough, we learned that right wing activist Leonard Leo funneled $25,000 in clandestine payments to “Ginni” a decade ago. He knew that his payments were wrong, so Leo instructed “No mention of Ginni” on the hidden documents.
The same year this obvious bribe occurred, the Judicial Education Project, the nonprofit Leo used to funnel the money to Ginni Thomas, filed a brief to the Supreme Court in a key voting rights case. No conflict of interest to see here. None at all.
In a perfect world, Clarence Thomas would resign in disgrace from the Supreme Court and his sleazy family would repay Crow for his bribes. But for now, at least we can exult in the fact that the Thomas family’s bogus mask of morality has fallen, and the world can see Clarence and Ginni Thomas for the corrupt, two-bit hucksters they truly are.
Exhibit B: Leaders of the Proud Boys were convicted of seditious conspiracy. They were found guilty on 31 of 46 counts. Donald Trump’s January 6 foot soldiers will now be trading in their brown shirts for orange jumpsuits.
I hope the judge sentences the defendants to 20 years in prison. He should show the same mercy the Proud Boys offered police officers defending the capitol on January 6. Maximum prison sentences will give them plenty of time to stand back and stand by in their prison cells.
Attorney General Merrick Garland reminded Americans that his January 6 criminal investigations have netted more than 600 convictions. Of course, the Justice Department’s work won’t be complete until Donald Trump and his inner cabal of coup plotters are behind bars.
In Arizona, the lying lawyers for failed gubernatorial candidate, Kari Lake, were sanctioned. Arizona’s Supreme Court fined Lake’s attorneys $2,000 for making “false factual statements to the Court.”
A more appropriate penalty would have been $20,000 and disbarment. But, at the very least, the truth was put on trial, and it won. This fine won’t make everything fine within a GOP that thrives on conspiracy theories. But perhaps it will dissuade future attorneys from ruining their reputations by acting disreputably for clients that put personal power over patriotism.
The only way to stop Republican criminality is by ensuring that there are consequences. This week served a healthy dose of comeuppance that hopefully puts future right wing goons and hustlers on notice.
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