February 25, 2018 1:04 pm -

The horrific terrorist slaughter of high school students in Parkland, Florida has taken up a large portion of the media oxygen for the last ten days. That should be no surprise, nor should the fact that it eclipsed an important article by Jill Abramson that every Democrat and Supreme Court watcher needs to read.

Abramson calls for a rigorous reexamination of evidence that Clarence Thomas lied to get onto the Supreme Court, and to seriously mull impeachment.

[T]he [Anita] Hill-Thomas conflagration was the first moment in American history when we collectively, truly grappled with sexual harassment. For my generation, it was the equivalent of the Hiss-Chambers case, a divisive national argument about whom to believe in a pitched political and ideological battle, this one with an overlay of sex and race. The situation has seemed un-reopenable, having been tried at the highest level and shut down with the narrow 1991 Senate vote to confirm Thomas, after hearings that focused largely on Hill.

But, as Abramson clearly delineates, the political game board has changed so completely — particularly with respect to sexual abuse and the rise of the #MeToo movement — that, she argues, it is time to line the ducks up and put Thomas on trial in the Senate.We’re putting this link here for a second time because we urge you to go over and take in Abramson’s article.

She clearly hit a nerve — right-wing polemicist Elizabeth Slattery penned a venomous attack on Abramson and her article for Daily Signal that got picked up by various Mighty Wurlitzers within the right-wing echo chamber.

On the other hand, Abramson’s article prompted Angela Wright-Shannon to write a cautious concurrence:

In 1991, I was a metro editor at The Charlotte Observer, lobbying to become a columnist, when I was subpoenaed to testify at Thomas’ confirmation hearings after a colleague leaked word to Sen. Joe Biden that I was writing a column about my experiences working with Thomas. The column, though not intended for publication at the time, expressed my conviction that Anita Hill was telling the truth about Thomas — who, as Hill’s boss, allegedly tried to date her and engage in lengthy conversations about sex and pornography. I believed Hill because I had experienced similar behavior from him: He had repeatedly pressured me to date him and inquired about my breast size.

Four African-American women, including me, were willing to join professor Hill and testify about Thomas’ behavior. We all were denied a voice. Professor Hill and I were maligned by Thomas supporters, on the Senate panel and in his personal circle, in an attempt to coerce us into silence. But I wasn’t afraid to speak then, and I’m not afraid to speak now. Other women have since come forth, including Thomas’ ex-girlfriend Lillian McEwen, an African-American woman who surfaced in 2011 and confirmed that Thomas had a penchant for porn and behaved inappropriately with women at work.

Wright-Shannon is pessimistic about justice being done, but holds out “hope that the Congressional balance of power shifts this election year, and that predators like Thomas, and even Trump, will be removed from power.”

Your old friend The Doc will go a step further: I say that Hill Democrats, in anticipation a takeback of both the House and the Senate, should quietly begin both the due diligence into Thomas’s behavior and confirmation testimony and formulation of a strategy to have him impeached — likely before any such action against Donald Trump and Mike Pence. Remember — as Republicans recited like a mantra during the Clinton impeachment, perjury is a serious crime.

Even if Thomas is not convicted in the Senate, he becomes an albatross around not only the court but the conservative movement — a walking, talking (despite almost never asking questions during Supreme Court hearings) poster boy for Republican hypocrisy, diminished in stature and permanently damaged in reputation. Let the GOP howl about the “politics of personal destruction” — they’ve been doing it for years, and it’s about time the Democratic Party, liberals, and progressives give the American Right a taste of their own medicine.

D.B. Hirsch
D.B. Hirsch is a political activist, news junkie, and retired ad copy writer and spin doctor. He lives in Brooklyn, New York.