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After abortion leak, Justice Thomas warns Supreme Court can't be 'bullied'

World May 06, 2022 06:30PM ET
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© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Pro-abortion demonstrators hold up photographs of U.S. Supreme Court Associate Justice Amy Coney Barrett, Associate Justice Samuel Alito, Associate Justice Clarence Thomas, Associate Justice Brett Kavanaugh and Chief Justice John Roberts durin

By Rich McKay

ATLANTA (Reuters) - Following protests sparked by the leak of a draft U.S. Supreme Court decision indicating the justices are poised to overturn the constitutional right to abortion, Justice Clarence Thomas said on Friday that the court cannot be "bullied."

The leak set off a political firestorm, with abortion-rights supporters staging rallies outside the courthouse and at locations around the United States, as well as an internal crisis at the nation's top judicial body where an investigation into the source of the unprecedented disclosure is underway.

Thomas, one of the most conservative justices on the nine-member court, made only a few passing references to the protests over the leaked draft opinion as he spoke at a judicial conference in Atlanta.

As a society, "we are becoming addicted to wanting particular outcomes, not living with the outcomes we don't like," Thomas said.

"We can't be an institution that can be bullied into giving you just the outcomes you want. The events from earlier this week are a symptom of that."

Police have surrounded the court with tall black fencing following the protests, which have been peaceful.

The draft opinion, authored by conservative Justice Samuel Alito and published on Monday by the Politico news outlet, would uphold a Mississippi law banning abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy and overturn the landmark 1973 Roe v. Wade decision that legalized abortion nationwide.

The court confirmed the authenticity of the document but called it preliminary. The court is due to issue its ruling in the case by the end of June.

Alito on Friday canceled his appearance at another court conference, instead sending a video message in which he told attendees it would have been "impractical" to attend, according to people who attended the conference.

Thomas, a native of Georgia, spoke at the 11th Circuit Judicial Conference, a gathering of lawyers and judges from the Atlanta-based federal appeals court and the federal district courts of Georgia, Florida and Alabama.

On Thursday, Roberts told conference attendees that the leak was "absolutely appalling" but vowed that it would not affect the court's work.

After abortion leak, Justice Thomas warns Supreme Court can't be 'bullied'
 

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Comments (4)
Tre Hsi
Tre Hsi May 09, 2022 11:14AM ET
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Clarence Thomas didn't seem to have a problem when his wife went around bullying everyone else trying to overturn the 2020 election.....
Jerome Sheehan
JayShee May 08, 2022 11:19PM ET
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hey Reuters....why did you intentionally neglect to disclose that the "protestors" went to the HOMES of justices Roberts and Kavanaugh (coincidentally, the two most easily influenced of the conservatives)? You simply mentioned that the protesters went to the courthouse and "other locations" around the US. Do you not want to let your readers know that these pro ***douchebags are going to doxxed justices homes?
CTCS INSTITUTO
CTCS INSTITUTO May 08, 2022 6:16PM ET
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stop murrderring babies
Forex Harbingers
ForexHarbingers May 08, 2022 8:47AM ET
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Bet every single one of those ladies protesting wouldnt abort the "mistake" if the "inseminator" was high value.
 
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