President Trump’s Supreme Court nominee, Brett Kavanaugh, is facing allegations of sexual misconduct in the 11th hour of his confirmation process. Similarly, Clarence Thomas faced allegations of sexual misconduct at the end of his confirmation hearing under George H. W. Bush.
Christine Blasey Ford has publicly accused Kavanaugh of assaulting her 36 years ago when they were both teenagers. Kavanaugh has forcefully denied the allegations and welcomed further questions about the incident. Kavanaugh, however, is not the first nominee to the highest court in the land to face such allegations. In 1991, Clarence Thomas faced similar allegations.
Anita Hill accused Thomas of sexual harassment while she was working for him at the Department of Education.
Thomas addressed the allegations before the Senate Judiciary Committee and forcefully denied them. Thomas said of the accusations:
“I think that this today is a travesty. I think that it is disgusting. I think that this hearing should never occur in America. This is a case in which this sleaze, this dirt, was searched for by staffers of members of this committee, was then leaked to the media, and this committee and this body validated it and displayed it at prime time over our entire nation.”
Thomas continued, saying “the Supreme Court is not worth” what the allegations did to himself and his family: “No job is worth it.”
Thomas continued, calling the entire process a “high-tech lynching.”
“From my standpoint as a black American, as far as I’m concerned, it is a high-tech lynching for uppity blacks who, in any way, deign to think for themselves, to do for themselves, to have different ideas, and it is a message that unless you kowtow to an old order, this is what will happen to you. You will be lynched, destroyed, caricatured by a committee of the U.S.— U.S. Senate, rather than hung from a tree.”