Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas has been accused of groping a 23-year-old woman back in 1999. The woman Moira Smith, now a lawyer, recently came forward and said that Thomas had grabbed and squeezed her buttocks while they were at a dinner party for the Truman Foundation back then. He even tried to get her to sit next to him but she said no, according to her. Then she walked away and that was the end of the incident.
Thomas is now 68-years-old and has been a Justice on the Supreme Court for the last 25 years. He’s already faced accusations involving sexual harassment before which may cause some to believe what Ms. Smith has to say. The most famous sexual harassment case against him was when a law professor named Anita Hill claimed Thomas had sexually harassed her. Nothing ever came of that case though.
Ms. Smith’s motivation to come forward didn’t have anything to do with Thomas’s past actions. Instead, it had to do with the leaked 2005 video of Donald Trump on the Access Hollywood bus with Billy Bush, which came out earlier this month. On the video, you can hear Trump talking about being able to kiss and grab women without their consent because he’s a star. This video ultimately led Smith to come forward with her sexual harassment experience.
Three former housemates of Ms. Smith have confirmed that they were told about the incident soon after it occurred. Her ex-husband also backed up her story as well. But to the guests who were at the dinner, they don’t recall Thomas doing anything inappropriate with Ms. Smith. Plus, Thomas has had more than thirty female clerks working for him over the course of his career and none of them ever claimed that he acted inappropriately with them. So, it is unlikely that Ms. Smith’s accusation will do Thomas any harm.