U.S. Supreme Court Justice Alito

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Alito

Debates

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P

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Yesterday evening, Jodi Kantor of the New York Times reported that in the days before Biden’s inauguration, an upside-down American flag flew in front of Supreme Court justice Samuel Alito’s home. A U.S. flag flown upside down is a universal symbol of distress. In the days after the January 6, 2021, insurrection, Trump loyalists flew the upside-down flag as a symbol of “the impending death of the nation and a call to arms,” according to American studies professor Matthew Guterl.

Leading scholar of the American right Kathleen Belew explained on social media that the upside-down flag was “not just signifying that the election was ‘stolen.’ The inverted flag means the country has been overthrown (to many, if not most, on the right). This is a profound act of symbolism and appalling at the home of a Supreme Court Justice.”

For Alito to fly it was an indication that he was part of the insurrection.

In September 2021, Trump loyalist lawyer Sidney Powell, who was part of the team trying to get the results of the 2020 presidential election overturned, told a right-wing talk show host that while rioters were attacking the Capitol, she and her team were trying to get an emergency injunction to prevent Congress from certifying Biden’s victory.

“We were filing a 12th Amendment constitutional challenge to the process that the Congress was about to use under the Electoral Act provisions that simply don’t jive [sic] with the 12th Amendment to the United States Constitution,” she said. “And Justice Alito was our circuit justice for that.”

The plan was thwarted, she said, when then-House speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) reconvened Congress and certified Biden’s win that night. “[S]he really had to speed up reconvening Congress to get the vote going before Justice Alito might have issued an injunction to stop it all, which is what should have happened,” Powell said.

Senate Judiciary Committee chair Dick Durbin (D-IL) said today that “Justice Alito should recuse himself immediately from cases related to the 2020 election and the January 6th insurrection, including the question of the former President's immunity in U.S. v. Donald Trump, which the Supreme Court is currently considering. The Court is in an ethical crisis of its own making, and Justice Alito and the rest of the Court should be doing everything in their power to regain public trust.”

House minority leader Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY) also called for Alito to recuse himself from cases involving the 2020 election and Trump.

The potential for Alito to destroy our country in order to restore Trump to the presidency has continued. Along with Supreme Court justice Clarence Thomas, whose wife Ginni was in both sympathy and communication with the others trying to overturn the results of the election, as well as the three extremist justices Trump appointed, Alito has been part of a court that has delayed its decision about whether Trump can be tried on criminal charges for conspiring to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election for so long that Trump likely has won his gambit to avoid trial before the 2024 election.

When Trump claimed last October that he could not be prosecuted, U.S. District Judge Tanya Chutkan, who is overseeing his trial, rejected the argument in December. Trump appealed, and Special Counsel Jack Smith asked the Supreme Court to decide the case immediately. The Supreme Court refused. Then, after a three-judge panel of a federal appeals court unanimously affirmed Chutkan’s ruling in a February 2024 decision that legal observers praised as “thorough and compelling,” Trump appealed to the Supreme Court. The Supreme Court then accepted his appeal and scheduled oral arguments for late April, more than a month after the original trial date set by Judge Chutkan.

The result of all this delay, former federal prosecutor Ankush Khardori wrote in Politico last month, is “that a question whose answer was obvious back in December is unlikely to get that answer from the Supreme Court until its session ends in June.” “If the Court hadn’t intervened, we would already have a verdict in the January 6 case,” political strategist Michael Podhorzer wrote, “and we don’t know whether the Court would have decided to intervene without Thomas and Alito.”

When the story of Alito’s misuse of the flag broke, the justice explained himself to Fox News Sunday host Shannon Bream. He blamed his wife, Martha-Ann Alito, for flying the flag, saying she had hung it up in response to a “F*** Trump” sign that was “within 50 feet of where children await the school bus in Jan[uary] 21.” He said that the neighbors are “very political” and had had “words” with the Alitos that had upset Mrs. Alito.

While Justice Alito blamed his wife for the flag, he could hardly have missed seeing it above his house. Former Chicago Tribune editor Mark Jacob wrote: “When I was an editor at the Chicago Tribune, I would’ve been in trouble if I’d let my wife put a political bumper sticker on our car. But a Supreme Court justice’s home can fly a flag of insurrection and he’s still allowed to rule on whether the head insurrectionist has immunity.”

The deputy chief of staff for Representative Don Beyer (D-VA), who represents the town in which the Alitos live, noted that the local schools were all remote in January 2021 because of the pandemic. “No children were waiting for buses,” he noted. Legal analyst Elie Mystal added: “Sam Alito running to Fox News to explain how…he’s not politically motivated at all…is an under-appreciated part of this ongoing ethical disaster.”

It would be bad enough for a Supreme Court justice to announce a partisan preference. But, as David Kurtz wrote this morning at Talking Points Memo, Alito’s embrace of the insurrectionist flag “was a bold declaration of affinity for and alignment with the smoldering insurrection led by a president of the same party that had just been put down but which still loomed as a threat to civic order, the peaceful transfer of power (which at that point had still not yet happened), and the rule of law.”

The call is coming from inside the house.
Heather Cox Richardson



Notes:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/2024/05/17/dow-jones-average-40000/

https://markets.businessinsider.com/news/stocks/stock-market-performance-under-president-donald-trump-dow-jones-sp500-2021-1-1029987163

https://www.usbank.com/investing/financial-perspectives/market-news/stock-market-under-biden.html

https://www.nytimes.com/2024/05/16/us/justice-alito-upside-down-flag.html

https://www.newsweek.com/sidney-powell-drags-justice-samuel-alito-supreme-court-january-6-mess-1632896

https://www.cnn.com/2024/02/06/politics/trump-immunity-court-of-appeals/index.html

https://www.scotusblog.com/2024/02/supreme-court-takes-up-trump-immunity-appeal/

https://www.scotusblog.com/2023/12/court-wont-hear-trump-immunity-dispute-now/

https://www.cadc.uscourts.gov/internet/opinions.nsf/1AC5A0E7090A350785258ABB0052D942/$file/23-3228-2039001.pdf

https://www.politico.com/news/magazine/2024/04/24/trumps-crazy-argument-for-immunity-heads-to-the-high-court-00153954

https://www.nytimes.com/2024/05/17/us/upside-down-american-flag-alito.html

https://talkingpointsmemo.com/morning-memo/the-insurrectionists-in-our-midst

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w

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@Phranny said
Yesterday evening, Jodi Kantor of the New York Times reported that in the days before Biden’s inauguration, an upside-down American flag flew in front of Supreme Court justice Samuel Alito’s home. A U.S. flag flown upside down is a universal symbol of distress. In the days after the January 6, 2021, insurrection, Trump loyalists flew the upside-down flag as a symbol of “the i ...[text shortened]... /1791530635502239985

ElieNYC/status/1791616565697241566

markjacob16/status/1791479696661631337
I know we've all played the "what if Obama tried to do what trump did" game, but If Justice Sotomayor was flying an anarchist flag, Republicans would be losing their minds.

Reepy Rastardly Guy

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@Phranny
This is a nothing burger.

k
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@Sleepyguy said
@Phranny
This is a nothing burger.
Hahaha yeah nothing to see hear
A guy whose sole purpose is to define and defend your constitution openly supports an attempt to overturn an election result and nullify the wishes of 80 million voters, it’s a 💩 burger and the US might just be dumb enough to eat it.

s
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@Sleepyguy said
@Phranny
This is a nothing burger.
A Supreme Court Justice is employed by We The People - a rather unique employment position. He is employed by us to dole out impartial justice which is an admittedly huge responsibility. Very few people are qualified to do it.

If there were any indication that Alito was not qualified and/or could not perform that critical role for us, then he should be removed immediately from his position of public employment.

So it's only a nothing burger if he has a convincing explanation.

Lake Como

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@spruce112358 said
A Supreme Court Justice is employed by We The People - a rather unique employment position. He is employed by us to dole out impartial justice which is an admittedly huge responsibility. Very few people are qualified to do it.

If there were any indication that Alito was not qualified and/or could not perform that critical role for us, then he should be removed immedia ...[text shortened]... position of public employment.

So it's only a nothing burger if he has a convincing explanation.
I agree. Not a proper act for a Supreme Court Justice. He should be admonished in some way. Did he explain or apologize? I heard it was his wife, not that that makes a hill of beans. He certainly knew about it....or, did he?

s
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@AverageJoe1
His explain was suspicious, as a response to neighbors putting up dem signs or some such.
But that pales in comparison to the billionaire club running SCOTUS right now, vacations costing hundreds of thousands of dollars all paid by those billionaires and just so coincidently, cases they want judged in their favor gets done.

Pawn Whisperer

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@Phranny said - "For Alito to fly it was an indication that he was part of the insurrection."
------------------------------

Ahhhhh... no.

Blade Runner

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@sonhouse said
@AverageJoe1
His explain was suspicious, as a response to neighbors putting up dem signs or some such.
But that pales in comparison to the billionaire club running SCOTUS right now, vacations costing hundreds of thousands of dollars all paid by those billionaires and just so coincidently, cases they want judged in their favor gets done.
Well maybe it was some local kids having a lark, and Alito is 74, so maybe he just didn't see it.

#Scotus # Term Limits

Lake Como

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@sonhouse said
@AverageJoe1
His explain was suspicious, as a response to neighbors putting up dem signs or some such.
But that pales in comparison to the billionaire club running SCOTUS right now, vacations costing hundreds of thousands of dollars all paid by those billionaires and just so coincidently, cases they want judged in their favor gets done.
What is wrong with a billionaire owing several homes? I do not understand, and have never been explained, your obsession with the rich. You hit a wall when I say....Should something be done about it, it is not right, it is wrong, WHAT is something that we can do to make it right?

Let's start small, The guy who invented the computer you are on, he is rich. What should have been done regarding his $ prior to his becoming rich?

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@Phranny said
Yesterday evening, Jodi Kantor of the New York Times reported that in the days before Biden’s inauguration, an upside-down American flag flew in front of Supreme Court justice Samuel Alito’s home. A U.S. flag flown upside down is a universal symbol of distress. In the days after the January 6, 2021, insurrection, Trump loyalists flew the upside-down flag as a symbol of “the i ...[text shortened]... /1791530635502239985

ElieNYC/status/1791616565697241566

markjacob16/status/1791479696661631337
“according to American studies professor Matthew Guterl. ”

its called propaganda sweetie

Blade Runner

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@AverageJoe1 said
What is wrong with a billionaire owing several homes? I do not understand, and have never been explained, your obsession with the rich. You hit a wall when I say....Should something be done about it, it is not right, it is wrong, WHAT is something that we can do to make it right?

Let's start small, The guy who invented the computer you are on, he is rich. What should have been done regarding his $ prior to his becoming rich?
I hope you felt the same way about Nancy Pelosi's wealth.

P

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@spruce112358 said
A Supreme Court Justice is employed by We The People - a rather unique employment position. He is employed by us to dole out impartial justice which is an admittedly huge responsibility. Very few people are qualified to do it.

If there were any indication that Alito was not qualified and/or could not perform that critical role for us, then he should be removed immedia ...[text shortened]... position of public employment.

So it's only a nothing burger if he has a convincing explanation.
He claims his wife did it and he didn't notice a huge upside down flag in his yard.

P

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@AverageJoe1 said
I agree. Not a proper act for a Supreme Court Justice. He should be admonished in some way. Did he explain or apologize? I heard it was his wife, not that that makes a hill of beans. He certainly knew about it....or, did he?
Maybe he was away from home porking a porn star and thus didn't see the flag.

s
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@Phranny said
He claims his wife did it and he didn't notice a huge upside down flag in his yard.
Some years ago, Speaker John Bercrow got in trouble because he drove his wife's car to work and it had an anti-brexit sticker on it.