In Brief: Should Clarence Thomas Recuse? (with Kathleen Clark)


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As more information becomes public about Ginni Thomas’s efforts to overturn the 2020 election results, there is increasing pressure on her husband, Justice Clarence Thomas, to recuse himself from election-related cases. But what are the rules around recusal for Supreme Court justices? And who can enforce them?

Preet speaks with Kathleen Clark, an expert in legal ethics and a professor at Washington University in St. Louis School of Law, about whether Justice Thomas should recuse — and the likelihood that he will.

Stay Tuned in Brief is presented by CAFE and the Vox Media Podcast Network. Please let us know what you think! Email us at, or leave a voicemail at 669-247-7338.

References and Supplemental Materials:

28 U.S. Code § 455 - Disqualification of justice, judge, or magistrate judge

Texas v. Pennsylvania (2020)

Justice Scalia’s memorandum on recusal, Richard B. Cheney v. District Court for the District of Columbia (2004)

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