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John Oliver offers Clarence Thomas $1m a year to leave Supreme Court

‘This is not a joke’

Amelia Neath
Monday 19 February 2024 18:25 GMT
John Oliver offers Clarence Thomas $1m a year to leave Supreme Court

John Oliver has offered Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas $1m a year if he leaves the court immediately.

On a recent episode of Last Week Tonight with John Oliver, the show host declared, “This is not a joke”, as he waved a contract at the screen and asked the judge to “get the f*** off the Supreme Court.”

He added that on top of the million a year, he would throw in a motor coach worth $2.4m in return for the judge leaving the United States’ highest court – making reference with this offer to previous motor coach coverage, which revealed Mr Thomas borrowed over a quarter of a million dollars from a wealthy friend to buy a luxury motor coach years prior.

Associate US Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas has been under fire for recieving luxury holidays and gifts (AFP via Getty Images)

"Clarence Thomas is arguably the most consequential justice on the court right now, and he’s never really seemed to like the job. He’s said it’s not worth doing ‘for the grief,’" Oliver said.

In 2001, Mr Thomas made a speech that was reported on by The New York Post, in which he said that his job was not worth doing for what they pay.

“The job is not worth doing for the grief. But it is worth doing for the principle,” he said to the outlet.

Mr Thomas, who will earn $298,500 this year for his role as a Supreme Court Associate Judge, was revealed to have accepted luxury vacations from real estate mogul Harlan Crow in an investigation published by ProPublica last year, which also claimed he received gifts from other wealthy businesspeople for years without disclosing them.

Mr Thomas did respond to the criticism, saying he did not need to report on gifts and travel as it was “personal hospitality from close personal friends,” but did end up including several trips paid for Mr Crow in his 2022 financial disclosure report.

However, Oliver had an idea to give Mr Thomas a very expensive offer while also getting what he wanted – Mr Thomas off the Supreme Court.

Oliver admitted that the judge must have a “lot on your plate right now, from stripping away women’s rights to hearing January 6 cases,” but said his offer could get him away from all that and give him a chance to live around the “regular folks whose lives you have made demonstrably worse.”

John Oliver has given the judge a chance to receive $1m dollars from himself (Getty Images)

"So what if he could keep the luxury perks that he clearly enjoys without having to endure all of that grief?" Mr Oliver said.

The show host said he would give the judge $1m a year until one of the two of them dies and proceeded to show off the motor coach as if he was advertising the top prize for a quiz show competition winner.

The vehicle features a bedroom with a king-sized bed, one-and-a-half baths, a fireplace, four TVs, a huge fridge and washing and drying facilities.

“And if you’re thinking, what will my friends say if I take this offer? Will they judge me as they sit in the boardrooms and megayachts and Hitler shrines? Will they still treat me to luxury vacations and sing songs about me off of their phones?” Oliver asked.

“Well, that’s the beauty of friendships, Clarence. If they’re real friends, they’ll love you no matter what your job is.”

The host said that his offer to Mr Thomas is “somehow legal” and that HBO is not putting up the money, but that he would be funding it himself.

He added that the judge better hurry, as he is only giving Mr Thomas 30 days to accept his offer.

"You can make me really regret this. I could be doing standup tours to pay for your retirement for years,” the host said.

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