Ethics concerns arise when Justice’s net worth spikes after joining SCOTUS

Leftist double standards were at the fore as ethics outrage appears reserved solely for conservative Supreme Court justices amid reports of one progressive colleague’s lucrative time on the bench.

As the coequal branches of the American government, designed as a system of checks and balances, have continually eroded through executive fiat, bureaucratic neutering, and judicial activism, a constitutionally faithful Supreme Court has remained one of the firmest supports against the collapse of the American Republic.

To that end, Democratic politicians have seen fit to assault the traditionalists like Justices Clarence Thomas and Samuel Alito in an effort to push for reforms like term limits, expansion or, at the most extreme, outright impeachment of sitting members. But while the aforementioned judges have remained the target of partisan attacks, Justice Sonia Sotomayor’s estimated hundredfold increase in net worth has gone unquestioned.

Following a recent report from the Associated Press about how the justice’s staff made arrangements with colleges and libraries to buy books when she had spoken at their locations, Fox News indicated that in the 14 years since then-President Barack Obama nominated her, Sotomayor’s finances have benefitted considerably.

Prior to her 2009 appointment to the court, financial disclosures showed her investments, which included two bank accounts, were valued between $15,001 and $65,000, a drop from 2007 when she was said to have between $50,001 and $115,000.

Speaking engagements and book deals with Penguin Random House have since left the justice with a net worth valued between $1.5 million and $6.6 million, according to her 2021 and 2022 financial disclosures.

As detailed by Fox News, Sotomayor’s yearly salary in her prior role as a federal appeals court judge was $180,000 with an additional $25,000 in annual earnings from teaching at New York-area law schools. Her current salary with the Supreme Court is $285, 400.

“Supreme Court staffers have been deeply involved in organizing speaking engagements intended to sell books,” the AP reported. “That is conduct prohibited for members of Congress and the executive branch, who are barred under ethics rules from using government resources, including staff, for personal financial gain.”

With $3.7 million said to have been earned from her book deals since joining the Supreme Court, the AP cited numerous examples of attendees at universities and libraries hoping to meet Sotomayor being required to purchase one of her books to snag a spot in line.

What’s more, Article III Project founder and president Mike Davis pointed out to Fox News Digital that the justice, along with her colleague Justice Neil Gorsuch, had failed to recuse herself from cases pertaining to Random House despite the obvious concern.

“Justice Sotomayor is a good person who appears to have made a mistake by having her staff sell her books, including what appears as pressure on schools and libraries to buy a minimum number of her books before her speaking engagements,” he said. “She acknowledges she made a mistake by failing to recuse from several cases involving her book publisher. The Supreme Court has adequate mechanism in place to deal with these mistakes, and the Supreme Court has already taken corrective measures.”

But, while corporate media and leftist politicians have continued to slam conservative justices over perceived improprieties, Arkansas Sen. Tom Cotton noted the silence on Sotomayor.

“The media ignores Justice Sotomayor receiving gifts while attacking Justices Thomas and Alito. Once again, there is a different standard for conservatives,” he tweeted, sharing a snip of a conversation with radio host Hugh Hewitt.

Responding to the concerns posed by the AP report, the court released a statement that said in part, “Judges, including justices, routinely travel and speak to university, college and law school audiences and affiliated individuals and entities. Judicial staff play an important role in assisting on issues of ethics, travel, and security.”

“Chambers staff assist the justices in complying with judicial ethics guidance for such visits, including guidance relating to judges; publications. For example, judicial ethics guidance suggests that a judge may sign copies of his or her work, which may also be available for sale,” the statement noted, “but there should be no requirement or suggestion that attendees are required to purchase books in order to attend.”

Kevin Haggerty


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