April 06, 2023

Van Hollen Statement on ProPublica Reporting on Justice Thomas

Today, U.S. Senator Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) released the following statement regarding ProPublica’s reporting around Justice Clarence Thomas: 

“Americans’ confidence in our highest court is tanking because of this kind of conduct. We need answers. And the Court needs a code of ethics.”

Senator Van Hollen – chairman of the Appropriations Subcommittee on Financial Services and General Government, with jurisdiction over the Court’s appropriations – has previously expressed his interest in using the appropriations process to ensure the Supreme Court adopts a code of ethics, stating:  

“The Supreme Court should have a code of ethics to govern the conduct of its members, and its refusal to adopt such standards has contributed to eroding public confidence in the highest court in the land. It is unacceptable that the Supreme Court has exempted itself from the accountability that applies to all other members of our federal courts, and I believe Congress should act to remedy this problem. That’s why I will seek to use the appropriations process to ensure that the Supreme Court adopts a code of conduct similar to that which applies to other members of the federal bench. I recognize that, given the composition of the Congress, this effort will require bipartisan support, so I’ll be working to secure that – but I don’t see any reason why ensuring that the Supreme Court establish a code of ethics should be a partisan issue.”