Ginni and Clarence Thomas
Dear Commons Community,
In the weeks between the 2020 presidential election and the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol, Virginia Thomas, the wife of Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, sent a barrage of text messages imploring President Donald J. Trump’s chief of staff to take steps to overturn the vote.
In one message sent in the days after the election, she urged the chief of staff, Mark Meadows, to “release the Kraken and save us from the left taking America down,” invoking a slogan popular on the right that refers to a web of conspiracy theories that Trump supporters believed would overturn the election.
In another, she wrote: “I can’t see Americans swallowing the obvious fraud. Just going with one more thing with no frickin consequences.” She added: “We just cave to people wanting Biden to be anointed? Many of us can’t continue the GOP charade.” As reported by The Washington Post, CBS, News and The New York Times.
The contents of the texts were among about 9,000 pages of documents that Mr. Meadows turned over to the congressional committee investigating the Jan. 6, 2021, Capitol attack. The texts detailed Mr. Meadows’s interactions with Republican politicians as they planned strategies to try to keep Mr. Trump in office in the weeks before the riot.
The committee obtained 29 texts between Ms. Thomas and Mr. Meadows — 28 exchanged between Nov. 4 and Nov. 24, and one written on Jan. 10. The text messages, most of which were written by Ms. Thomas, represent the first evidence that she was directly advising the White House as it sought to overturn the election. In fact, in her efforts to keep Mr. Trump in power, Ms. Thomas effectively toggled between like-minded members of the executive and legislative branches, even as her husband, who sits atop the judiciary branch that is supposed to serve as a check on the other branches of government, heard election-related cases.
Justice Thomas has been Mr. Trump’s most stalwart defender on the court. In February 2021, he wrote a dissent after the majority declined to hear a case filed by Pennsylvania Republicans that sought to disqualify certain mail-in ballots. And this past January, he was the only justice who voted against allowing the release of records from the Trump White House related to the Jan. 6 attack.
Ms. Thomas has actively opposed the Jan. 6 committee and its work, co-signing a letter in December calling for House Republicans to expel Representatives Liz Cheney and Adam Kinzinger from their conference for joining the committee. Ms. Thomas and her co-authors said the investigation “brings disrespect to our country’s rule of law” and “legal harassment to private citizens who have done nothing wrong,” adding that they would begin “a nationwide movement to add citizens’ voices to this effort.”
Many of Ms. Thomas’s postelection texts are rambling, with little attention to punctuation, and they run the gamut. She calls Nov. 3, Election Day, a “heist,” and repeats debunked conspiracy theories, including one pushed by QAnon that falsely alleged that voter fraud had been discovered in Arizona on secretly watermarked ballots.
The texts show she was communicating not only with Mr. Meadows, but also with Connie Hair, the chief of staff to Louie Gohmert, the Texas Republican congressman who sued Vice President Mike Pence to force him to certify Mr. Trump as the victor of the 2020 election.
The text traffic also suggests that Ms. Thomas was in contact with Jared Kushner, the former president’s son-in-law and adviser. Sidney Powell, the lawyer advising Trump’s campaign team known for unleashing wild theories about voting fraud, comes up repeatedly. On Nov. 13, for instance, Mr. Trump included Ms. Powell in a tweeted list of his team’s lawyers. That same day, Ms. Thomas urged Mr. Meadows to support Ms. Powell, and said she had also reached out to “Jared” to do the same: “Just forwarded to yr gmail an email I sent Jared this am,” she wrote. “Sidney Powell & improved coordination now will help the cavalry come and Fraud exposed and America saved.”
When some of the president’s other lawyers began distancing themselves from Ms. Powell, Ms. Thomas warned Mr. Meadows not to “cave” to the “elites.”
In one text exchange right after the election, she tells Mr. Meadow that he needs to listen to Steve Pieczenik, a onetime State Department consultant who has appeared on Alex Jones’s Infowars to claim, among other things, that the Sandy Hook school massacre was a false-flag operation.
Justice Thomas should resign and get help for his wife!