Ocasio-Cortez files impeachment articles against Supreme Court Justices Thomas, Alito

Ocasio-Cortez files impeachment articles against Supreme Court Justices Thomas, Alito

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) on Wednesday introduced articles of impeachment against Supreme Court Justices Clarence Thomas and Samuel Alito, citing their “pattern of refusal to recuse” themselves from matters to which they are connected and their “failure to disclose” millions of dollars in gifts over decades.

“The unchecked corruption crisis on the Supreme Court has now spiraled into a Constitutional crisis threatening American democracy writ large,” Ocasio-Cortez wrote in a press release announcing the impeachment articles.

“Justices Clarence Thomas and Samuel Alito’s pattern of refusal to recuse from consequential matters before the court in which they hold widely documented financial and personal entanglements constitutes a grave threat to American rule of law, the integrity of our democracy, and one of the clearest cases for which the tool of impeachment was designed,” she continued.

Both impeachment resolutions include an article citing Thomas’s and Alito’s “failure to disclose financial income, gifts and reimbursements, property interests, liabilities, and transactions, among other information.”

The impeachment resolution against Thomas includes two articles related to his “refusal to recuse from matters concerning his spouse’s legal interest in cases before the court” as well as her “financial interest in cases before the court.”

The second impeachment resolution, against Alito, includes a second article citing Alito’s “refusal to recuse from cases in which he had a personal bias or prejudice concerning a party in cases before the court.”

Ocasio-Cortez vowed early last week to file impeachment articles against at least one justice on the Supreme Court, after a 6-3 ruling granted presidents broad immunity from criminal prosecution, a major victory for former President Trump as he faces felony charges for his efforts to stay in power after losing the 2020 presidential election.

“Today’s ruling represents an assault on American democracy. It is up to Congress to defend our nation from this authoritarian capture,” Ocasio-Cortez wrote on the social platform X last Monday. “I intend on filing articles of impeachment upon our return.”

Ahead of the Supreme Court’s ruling on presidential immunity, Alito and Thomas faced calls to recuse themselves in cases related to the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol, including in last week’s presidential immunity decision. Critics cited the public reports connecting the justices to the “Stop the Steal” movement behind the Capitol attack – even if the justices themselves maintain they have no connection to the movement.

Thomas’s wife was a major player in the “Stop the Steal” movement, while Alito has recently come under fire over a flag flying over his home that has been connected to the “Stop the Steal” movement. Both justices have refused calls to recuse. Alito said an upside-down U.S. flag over his home was the responsibility of his wife.

Democrats have sharpened their focus on the Supreme Court after the presidential immunity ruling, hoping that a messaging blitz focused on the bench could turbocharge campaigns up and down the ballot in the lead-up to the November elections.

In addition to Ocasio-Cortez’s impeachment resolution, Democrats have floated a host of reform proposals that they’re hoping to adopt if voters deliver them the House majority at the polls in November.

The list includes efforts to apply term limits to Supreme Court justices; establish a formal — and enforceable — code of ethics by which the justices must abide; increase the number of justices on the court; and grant Congress greater oversight powers over their conduct.

This story was updated at 3:17 p.m.

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