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Clarence Thomas Fails to Disclose More Gifts From Right-Wing Buddy

The Supreme Court justice conveniently forgot to report even more private jet travel with Harlan Crow.

Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas in his robe
Alex Wong/Getty Images

It turns out Clarence Thomas has failed to disclose even more free trips from conservative billionaire Harlan Crow, a Senate Judiciary Committee investigation uncovered.

At least three times, Crow provided trips on his private jet to the Supreme Court justice to destinations including a March 2019 trip to Thomas’s Georgia hometown, a May 2017 trip to Montana near Glacier National Park with a return flight to Dallas two days later, and a June 2021 roundtrip flight between San Jose, California, and Washington, D.C. The revelations were provided to the committee from Crow’s lawyer.

The purpose of the trips was not mentioned in the report, and Thomas has not reported them in his financial disclosures, even though some legal experts say it violates the law.

It may be the first of more revelations to come, according to Judiciary Chair Dick Durbin, who said that a full investigative report from Democrats on the committee would be released later in the summer.

“As a result of our investigation and subpoena authorization, we are providing the American public greater clarity on the extent of ethical lapses by Supreme Court justices,” Durbin said in a statement. The revelations make it “crystal clear that the highest court needs an enforceable code of conduct,” he added.

Last year, a ProPublica investigation found that Thomas received free luxury vacations from Crow nearly every year, which the Supreme Court justice failed to report until just last week. The publication also reported that Crow funded the renovation of the home where Thomas’s mother lives, as well as the private school tuition of Mark Martin, the grandson of Thomas’s sister Emma Mae Martin. Thomas and his wife, Ginni Thomas, were Martin’s legal guardians from age 6 to 19 but have since cut ties with Martin, whom Thomas once said he was raising as a “son,” Martin revealed in a recent interview. 

Watch: Adam Schiff Reminds Republicans Just How Guilty Trump Is

The Democratic representative had an especially poignant summary of Donald Trump’s felony convictions.

Representative Adam Schiff speaking during a congressional hearing. His nameplate is before him.
Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

On Thursday on the House floor, Representative Adam Schiff sought to drive home the point of Donald Trump’s 34 felony convictions in his hush-money trial.

“Guilty, guilty, guilty, guilty, guilty, guilty, guilty, guilty, guilty, guilty, guilty, guilty, guilty, guilty, guilty, guilty, guilty, guilty, guilty, guilty, guilty, guilty, guilty, guilty, guilty, guilty, guilty, guilty, guilty, guilty, guilty, guilty, guilty, guilty,” Schiff said during a House Judiciary Committee hearing on the Manhattan district attorney’s investigation into Trump’s hush-money scheme prior to the 2016 presidential election. “This was what the jury pronounced, unanimously on every count.”

The California representative and Senate candidate pointed out that Republicans haven’t contested Trump’s guilt, but are basically demonstrating that they have discarded any moral convictions.

“What they’re really saying is they are more than comfortable nominating and electing as the president of the United States someone making hush-money payments to a porn star,” Schiff added, referring to adult film actress Stormy Daniels

Republicans have engaged in all kinds of conspiracy theories since Trump was found guilty, ranging from attacking Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg, as was the purpose of Thursday’s hearing, to attacking the political activities of Judge Juan Merchan’s daughter as proof of a partisan motive in Trump’s prosecution. During the trial, Trump himself made the accusation on his Truth Social account, only to be slapped with a gag order.

Trump is scheduled to be sentenced in the trial on July 11, and reportedly begged Speaker Mike Johnson to try to overturn the guilty verdict, in an expletive-laden tirade in the days following his conviction. While Bragg and prosecutor Matthew Colangelo have agreed to testify before the committee, that may be all that House Republicans can do to intervene in a state criminal case. Of course, Trump may be trying to enlist their help in advance of his plan to win in November and give himself a permanent get out of jail free card.

Trump Weighs in on Milwaukee Flub and Somehow Makes It Even Worse

Donald Trump doubled down on his comment as his fellow Republicans spiraled over it.

Donald Trump speaks into a microphone
Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images

Republicans were quick to spin Donald Trump’s decision to call Milwaukee a “horrible city” after his private meeting with House GOP lawmakers Thursday, offering a confused array of cover-up possibilities. And Trump’s own explanation seemed to make the least sense out of the bunch.

GOP representatives rushed to provide justifications that included whining about the city’s delay in answering the former president’s request to expand the security perimeter around the Republican National Convention to keep protesters further at bay. Several loyal allies even claimed that Trump never made the comments at all. Trump took a different route altogether.

“It was very clear what I meant,” Trump told Fox News’s Aishah Hasnie. “I said, we’re very concerned with crime. I love Milwaukee, I have great friends in Milwaukee, but it’s, as you know, the crime numbers are terrible. We have to be very careful.”

But that wasn’t all. Instead, Trump seems to feel it was obvious that he meant multiple things by the short insult.

“I was referring to, also, the election, the ballots, the way it went down, it was very bad in Milwaukee. Very, very bad,” Trump continued. “And the people understand that and they agree with me. Everybody agrees. No, that was a fake story that came out.”

“Yeah. Milwaukee has a problem with crime, as do most Democrat-run cities,” he said. “Most Democrat-run cities, almost all of them have problems. But they also have a problem with votes. And election integrity. And that’s what we want to make sure we get straight.”

Trump may still be reeling after a trio of his allies were hit with felony charges by Wisconsin prosecutors last week for their involvement in the 2020 fake elector scheme, including Kenneth Chesebro, who allegedly designed the national plot that aimed to frame Trump as the winner of the presidential election.

And, as for Trump’s claim that the city’s crime numbers “are terrible”—in reality, they’re way down, with homicides in the city decreasing by 42 percent when compared to 2022, according to data from the Milwaukee Police Department. Crimes such as rape, aggravated assault, theft, motor vehicle theft, and arson have also dropped off drastically in the Brew City.

Baselessly insulting the city where you’ll be nominated for U.S. president in a handful of weeks is certainly a choice, but here’s hoping that Milwaulkee still knows how to give Trump a warm welcome when he arrives.

Milwaukee Mayor Hilariously Shreds Trump for “Horrible City” Comment

Cavalier Johnson had some choice words for Donald Trump.

Milwaukee Mayor Cavalier Johnson speaks into microphones
Jamie Kelter Davis/Bloomberg/Getty Images

Donald Trump’s comment trashing Milwaukee, the site of this year’s Republican National Convention, has understandably not gone over well in the city.

Mayor Cavalier Johnson, asked about Trump calling Milwaukee a “horrible city” in a closed-door meeting with House Republicans on Thursday, clapped back at the former president.

“If Donald Trump wants to talk about things that he thinks are horrible, all of us lived through his presidency, so right back at you, buddy,” Johnson said.

“Look, obviously Donald Trump is wrong about something, yet again,” he continued. “I find it kind of perplexing, I find it kind of strange that he would insult the largest city in Wisconsin because he’s running for president, he obviously wants to win Wisconsin, win the election, and so to insult the state that’s hosting your convention, I think it’s kind of bizarre, actually, kind of unhinged, in a way.”

Johnson wasn’t the only Wisconsin politician to get in a few jabs at Trump. “Milwaukee makes the greatest beer, brats, and motorcycles in the world. It’s home to some of our most vibrant communities, hardest workers, and is a part of what makes Wisconsin the best state in the nation. Donald Trump wouldn’t understand even if a jury told him so,” Senator Tammy Baldwin tweeted, referring to Trump’s recent hush-money conviction.

Representative Gwen Moore of Wisconsin’s 4th district, which includes Milwaukee, also chimed in. “Once he’s settled in with his parole officer, I am certain he will discover that Milwaukee is a wonderful, vibrant and welcoming city full of diverse neighborhoods and a thriving business community,” she posted.

Every Republican Senator Who Voted Against Protecting IVF: Full List

Here is the name of every Republican who proudly voted against protecting in vitro fertilization.

Capitol building
Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images

Senate Republicans on Thursday blocked legislation to protect in vitro fertilization, a reproductive rights procedure that has gained popularity in recent years to help people have families.

Senate Democrats sought to codify federal protections for IVF as anti-abortion extremists sharpen their knives to severely restrict the procedure while advocating for a national abortion ban. The vote failed, with 48 votes in favor and 47 opposed. The bill needed 60 votes to pass. Only two Republicans voted with Democrats to protect the procedure: Senators Susan Collins of Maine and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska.

Here are all the other Senate Republicans who, after signing a GOP-led statement in support of IVF Thursday morning, actually voted against the Right to IVF Act:

  • John Barrasso—Wyoming
  • Marsha Blackburn—Tennessee
  • John Boozman—Arkansas
  • Mike Braun—Indiana
  • Katie Britt—Alabama
  • Ted Budd—North Carolina
  • Shelley Moore Capito—West Virginia
  • Bill Cassidy—Louisiana
  • John Cornyn—Texas
  • Tom Cotton—Arkansas
  • Kevin Cramer—North Dakota
  • Mike Crapo—Idaho
  • Ted Cruz—Texas
  • Steve Daines—Montana
  • Joni Ernst—Iowa
  • Deb Fischer—Nebraska
  • Lindsey Graham—South Carolina
  • Chuck Grassley—Iowa
  • Bill Hagerty—Tennessee
  • Josh Hawley—Missouri
  • John Hoeven—North Dakota
  • Cindy Hyde-Smith—Mississippi
  • Ron Johnson—Wisconsin
  • John Neely Kennedy—Louisiana
  • James Lankford—Oklahoma
  • Mike Lee—Utah
  • Cynthia Lummis—Wyoming
  • Roger Marshall—Kansas
  • Mitch McConnell—Kentucky
  • Jerry Moran—Kansas
  • Markwayne Mullin—Oklahoma
  • Rand Paul—Kentucky
  • Pete Ricketts—Nebraska
  • James E. Risch—Idaho
  • Mitt Romney—Utah
  • Mike Rounds—South Dakota
  • Marco Rubio—Florida
  • Rick Scott—Florida
  • Tim Scott—South Carolina
  • Dan Sullivan—Alaska
  • John Thune—South Dakota
  • Thom Tillis—North Carolina
  • Tommy Tuberville—Alabama
  • J.D. Vance—Ohio
  • Roger Wicker—Mississippi
  • Todd Young—Indiana

This article has been updated.

Mike Johnson and MTG Go Gaga Over Trump Praising Them

The two lawmakers shamelessly fawned over Trump after receiving just the tiniest bit of validation.

Marjorie Taylor Greene and Mike Johnson stand next to each other
Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc/Getty Images

Two MAGA soldiers appeared to be starstruck by Donald Trump during the former president’s meeting with House Republicans Thursday. Unfortunately for the country, they’re some of the top lawmakers in the country.

In a press conference held shortly after the reunion, House Speaker Mike Johnson couldn’t hold back from cracking a smile while mentioning that Trump had personally thanked him for his dedication to Trump’s cause.

“He said very complimentary things about all of us. We had sustained applause,” Johnson said before bashfully turning his head to the side with a smirk. “He said I’m doing a very good job. We’re grateful for that.”

But Johnson wasn’t the only one giddy at the idea of getting a gold star from Trump. Georgia Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene appeared equally thrilled that the presumptive GOP presidential nominee even recognized her among the crowd.

“He’s always so sweet, recognizing me, and he said, ‘Are you being nice to Speaker Johnson?’” she told CNN’s Lauren Fox.

“He was joking. And I said, ‘Eh,’” she continued, gesturing with her hands. “He said, ‘OK, be nice to him,’ and I nodded my head.”

Trump’s two golden children in the House were diametrically opposed as recently as last month, when Greene forced a vote to strip Johnson of the gavel. Her motion to vacate fell apart after the House voted 359–43 to keep Johnson in leadership.

But the time-consuming and chaotic effort came at the cost of Greene’s already minimal popularity in the lower chamber, with Republicans insisting that the Georgia Republican be stripped of her committee assignments for leading another attempt to divide an already thin and historically unproductive majority.

Trump’s Campaign Was Just a Scammy Money Grab All Along

Donald Trump has funneled millions of dollars from his presidential campaign to his businesses.

Donald Trump gestures as he walks
Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Donald Trump has transferred $4.6 million of donations to his campaign into his businesses by charging the campaign for travel and food expenses, according to a new report from Forbes.

Federal Election Commission filings show that Trump’s aviation company, Tag Air, has charged the campaign $4.2 million since his 2024 bid kicked off. Secret Service flight costs—members are required to travel with Trump on the campaign trail—reportedly account for more than $800,000.

The campaign has also spent around $60,000 between the Trump National Doral golf resort in Florida and the Trump Hotel in Las Vegas. And that’s to say nothing of the $332,000 the campaign has paid to host events at Mar-a-Lago, Trump’s residence.

It’s not the first time Trump has pulled this kind of enrichment scheme: As president, he reportedly charged Secret Service agents “exorbitant” rates—sometimes five times the General Services Administration–mandated government rate—to stay at Trump-branded hotels in the United States, and untold millions at Trump properties abroad. As a candidate in 2016, Trump promised to divest from his business holdings if he were elected president. In January 2017, not two weeks before his inauguration, he reneged on that pledge.

It’s no secret that Trump has been hurting for cash. After losing the 2020 election, he solicited $250 million in supporter donations for his “election defense fund.” In the last six months of 2023, he spent $27 million of his supporters’ money on legal fees. And in the wake of several legal judgments against him—including a $450 million fine in his civil fraud case and an $83 million fine in the E. Jean Carroll defamation suit—he’s been forced to rely on unsavory, if not outright illegal, fundraising methods. Knight Speciality Insurance, the only surety willing to post Trump’s bond in the civil fraud case, famously lacked the assets to back the bond.

The writer John Ganz recently wrote about the mafioso weltanschauung animating Trump’s approach to politics. If it wasn’t already clear from his 45 years of grifting, it’s obvious now that he does business like a gangster.

Republicans Have No Idea What Happened in That Trump Meeting Either

“Like talking to your drunk uncle at the family reunion,” one Republican representative said of the closed-door meeting.

Donald Trump speaking on a mic, eyebrows raised
Al Drago/Bloomberg/Getty Images

Donald Trump’s trip to Capitol Hill on Tuesday was supposed to be about his agenda if he wins the election in November. Instead, his meeting with House Republicans was about as coherent as one of his rally speeches.

“Like talking to your drunk uncle at the family reunion,” one source at the meeting said, while another said that the convicted felon and presumptive Republican presidential nominee was “rambling.”

Almost every Republican in the House attended the meeting, which was full of praise for Trump, including singing “Happy Birthday” to him and presenting him with the baseball from Wednesday’s Congressional Baseball Game. But after that, Trump’s remarks went in various directions, from praising Representatives Marjorie Taylor Greene, Nancy Mace, and Steve Scalise to bashing the site of this year’s Republican national convention, Milwaukee.

Trump also told the audience that he met with Virginia Governor Glenn Youngkin and claimed he’s leading polls in the state by two points, despite the fact that a Republican hasn’t won there since 2004. Bizarrely, he also brought up Taylor Swift, asking why the pop singer would “endorse this dope,” referring to Biden, and referenced Hannibal Lecter again, calling him a “nice guy.”

“He even had a friend over for dinner,” Trump said.

His comments on abortion to the group were puzzling, claiming that it only became an issue 10 years before.

Twitter screenshot Jake Sherman: 🚨🚨TRUMP on abortion to House Republicans: “Roe v Wade, everyone was against it because they wanted it to be decided by the states, there was no 10 weeks, 12 weeks, every person said it’s got to be back to the states. “It became a complex issue 10 years ago, everyone wanted it back in the states, and we got it back in the states, sometimes good sometimes not good, some states went one way and some states went a different way “But like Ronald Reagan, you have to have three choices: life of mother, rape and incest you have to do, but you have to follow your own heart “Republicans are so afraid of the issue, we would have had 40 seats”

Weirdly, he also said that one of Representative Nancy Pelosi’s daughters told him, “If things were different, Nancy and I would be perfect together,” which prompted an immediate denial from Pelosi’s daughter Christine.

Trump’s meandering rants didn’t hold the attention of everyone in the room, though, as Representative Chip Roy, who has often fought with his Republican colleagues, was at one point reportedly watching golf on an iPad while Trump spoke.

Who Will Protect Starbucks if Not the Supreme Court?

Someone needs to look out for union-busting corporations.

A man standing in front of a Starbucks holds a cardboard sign that reads "Starbucks No Contract No Coffee."
Kevin Dietsch/Getty Images
Members and supporters of Starbucks Workers United protest outside of a Starbucks in Washington, D.C. on November 16, 2023.

In a major blow to dastardly labor rights that cruelly curtail righteous corporate greed, the Supreme Court ruled in favor of Starbucks on Thursday. The ruling comes amid an ongoing battle between the heroic $25 billion corporation and the evil National Labor Relations Board’s order to rehire the “Memphis Seven,” a group of working class Starbucks employees who had the audacity to organize a union to support workers’ rights. The seven low wage workers were terminated by the java giant, prompting the NLRB to step in.

The case before the Supreme Court was brought by Starbucks seeking to overturn a lower court ruling that affirmed the NLRB’s order for Starbucks to rehire the Memphis Seven, and which issued an injunction against Starbucks for attempting to fight that rehiring. The Supreme Court’s ruling Thursday establishes a new precedent limiting the extent labor organizers and the NLRB can use the courts to enforce their rulings against companies that violate labor law or who unlawfully terminate workers in an effort to union-bust.

The NLRB successfully ordered Starbucks to rehire the “Memphis Seven” in September 2022. The NLRB alleged unfair labor practices for the firings, while Starbucks claimed the seven had engaged in “significant violations” of company policy: Starbucks claimed workers stayed in the store past closing time and allowed interviews by local media. Starbucks took its appeal to federal court and lost in August 2023 before appealing to the Supreme Court.

In response to the ruling, the Memphis Seven wrote, “It is a shame to see the lengths Starbucks is willing to go to destroy their image.” Starbucks Workers United, which represents unionized Starbucks employees, issued a statement on the ruling, calling it “particularly egregious” in light of how curtailed labor protections have become over the years.

SB Workers United statement Twitter screenshot: “Working people have so few tools to protect and defend themselves when their employers break the law. That makes today’s ruling by the Supreme Court particularly egregious. It underscores how the economy is rigged against working people all the way up to the Supreme Court. “Starbucks should have dropped this case the day it committed to chart a new path forward with its workers, instead of aligning itself with other giant corporations intent on stifling worker organizing. It’s incongruous to want to build a productive, positive relationship with workers and at the same time lead an attack on one of the few mechanisms they have to defend themselves against unscrupulous employers. “Regardless of large corporations’ machinations at the Supreme Court, workers are continuing to organize. Just last week, workers at 20 Starbucks stores filed petitions to join Starbucks Workers United. And there are nearly 450 union Starbucks stores across the country. Workers’ momentum is unstoppable and they will not let the Supreme Court down."

Unionized Starbucks workers and those seeking to unionize have frequently alleged union-busting efforts by the coffee giant, including unlawfully reducing or changing worker-organizers’ schedules or closing locations in retaliation for successful organizing drives. Starbucks has received at least 446 unfair labor practice charges in the past year alone. The Strategic Organizing Center estimates Starbucks has spent $153 million on “anti-union activity,” and is liable for $87 million in denied wages, illegal firings, and store closings.

On Thursday, all nine Supreme Court justices either wholly or partially ruled in favor of Starbucks on the basis of impropriety for courts to intervene on matters that can be—and in this case were—resolved by the National Labor Relations Board. Conservative Justice Clarence Thomas wrote the majority decision and pointed to “traditional rules” of courts not stepping in, with liberal justice Ketanji Brown Jackson partially concurring. “I am loath to bless this aggrandizement of judicial power where Congress has so plainly limited the discretion of the courts, and where it so clearly intends for the expert agency it has created to make the primary determinations about both merits and process,” wrote Jackson. The ruling effectively neutralizes the NLRB’s ability to use the court system to enforce its rulings against combative companies, marking the loss of one of the few tools left to combat intensified corporate union-busting.

This article has been updated.

Republicans in Panic Mode After Trump Trashes Milwaukee

Donald Trump attacked Milwaukee in a meeting with Republicans on the Hill—and now Republicans are desperately trying to cover for him.

Donald Trump speaks before a mic. U.S. flags are behind him.
David Dee Delgado/Getty Images

Donald Trump visited Capitol Hill Thursday to meet with Republicans in Congress and supposedly discuss strategy, but it didn’t take long for him to go off on tangents—and dump on the site of this year’s Republican National Convention, Milwaukee.

Tweet screenshot Jake Sherman: 🚨TRUMP TO HOUSE REPUBLICANS: "Milwaukee, where we are having our convention, is a horrible city."

Republican members of Congress from Wisconsin scrambled to respond to the comments, offering several different explanations to cover for the former president and convicted felon, including one representative who said the whole thing never happened. Unfortunately, three others said it definitely did.

Twitter Screenshot Lawrence Andrea: Wisconsin Rep. Glenn Grothman told me Trump made these comments when speaking about the election. Grothman said Trump was "concerned about the election in MKE" and "felt we need to do better in urban centers around the country."
Tweet screenshot Adam Rife: GOP appears to be scrambling to spin. A convention spokesperson told me Trump "was referencing the ongoing political game the City and County are playing with Pere Marquette Park. Despite concerns being raised months ago, the City has still not designated a first amendment zone."
Tweet screenshot Derrick Van Orden: Another classic example of shitty reporting by a Democratic Party shill pretending to be a journalist. Lies busy omission. @realDonaldTrump was specifically referring to the crime the CRIME RATE in Milwaukee. Tweet accompanies an article that reads "Milwaukee ranks third for violent crimes nationwide"
Tweet screenshot Lawrence Andrea: An aide to Rep. Scott Fitzgerald backs Grothman’s claim and tells me Fitzgerald said Trump’s comments “were about election integrity.”
Tweet screenshot Representative Bryan Steil: I was in the room. President Trump did not say this. There is no better place than Wisconsin in July.

Why would Trump criticize the city, especially since Wisconsin is a swing state that he narrowly lost in the 2020 election? The answer may very well be racism. Milwaukee is very often criticized by the rural and suburban politicians in the rest of the state, who use racist dog whistles, yell “socialism,” or rely on more overt bigotry. Myths of rampant crime continue to plague the city, even as its crime rate has dropped. Meanwhile, its sizable Black population, which has historically tipped the state blue, has slightly tempered its support for Democrats. In 2020, Trump’s allies responded to his election loss by trying to write off Milwaukee’s votes and overturn the state’s election results.

Recently, Wisconsin has been a source of bad news for the GOP, from a liberal candidate successfully winning a state Supreme Court seat to Democrats successfully throwing out one of the most gerrymandered legislative maps in the country. Perhaps Trump sees the writing on the wall and is (presumptuously) writing off the state for 2024, or he has another frightening plan to interfere in the state’s results if they don’t go his way. Or, maybe he hates Milwaukee for the same reasons he hates Chicago and Harrisburg.

One member of Congress who actually represents Milwaukee, had a healthier response to Trump’s comments.

Twitter screenshot Representative Gwen Moore: Once he's settled in with his parole officer, I am certain he will discover that Milwaukee is a wonderful, vibrant and welcoming city full of diverse neighborhoods and a thriving business community. (Quote tweeting Jake Sherman: TRUMP TO HOUSE REPUBLICANS: "Milwaukee, where we are having our convention, is a horrible city.")

This article has been updated.