According to reports, Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas said Friday at a judicial conference in Alabama that he and his wife have been subjected to “nastiness” and “lies” the past several years.

Thomas also criticized Washington D.C., describing it as a “hideous place.”

“Being in Washington, you have to get used to particularly people who are reckless,” Thomas said, according to CNN.

“They don’t bomb you, necessarily, but they bomb your reputation or your good name or your honor. And that’s not a crime but they can do as much harm that way,” he added.

Per CNN:

Speaking at the 11th US Circuit Court of Appeals conference in Point Clear, Alabama, Thomas argued that it would be a disservice to those soldiers and first responders “not to sit at my desk and make decisions with a lifetime appointment that we know are the right decisions.”

Thomas, while not speaking directly to a series of reports about ethics that have plagued him for months, repeatedly returned to his critics without prompting from US District Judge Kathryn Kimball Mizelle, who moderated the discussion.

“My wife and I, the last two or three years, it’s been – just the nastiness and the lies – it’s just incredible,” Thomas said.

Thomas and his wife, Ginni, have been the target of a good deal of criticism in recent years. Several of Thomas’ critics, including Democratic members of Congress, have called on him to recuse himself from Supreme Court cases involving the January 6, 2021, attack on the US Capitol because of his wife’s efforts to reverse the 2020 presidential election in former President Donald Trump’s favor.

Ginni Thomas has acknowledged attending Trump’s rally before the Capitol attack. Justice Thomas has declined to recuse himself from cases this year involving the January 6 attack, including a blockbuster appeal regarding Trump’s claims of absolute immunity from criminal charges for his efforts to overturn the election results.

“You don’t get to prevent people from doing horrible things or saying horrible things. But one you have to understand and accept the fact that they can’t change you unless you permit that,” Thomas added, according to Fox News. 

Fox News reports:

Thomas was asked questions by U.S. District Judge Kathryn Kimball Mizelle, who previously was a law clerk for Thomas.

The topics Thomas spoke about during his remarks included the lessons of his grandfather, his friendship with former colleagues and his belief that court writings and discussions should be more accessible for the public.

Thomas, the longest serving justice after being appointed to the bench in 1991, has spent most of his working life in Washington D.C., and expressed his distaste for the district.

“I think what you are going to find and especially in Washington, people pride themselves on being awful. It is a hideous place as far as I’m concerned,” Thomas said, adding that this is one of the reasons he and his wife like RVing.

“You get to be around regular people who don’t pride themselves in doing harmful things, merely because they have the capacity to do it or because they disagree,” he said.

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