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You don’t need to worry about this — it’s all covered

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A painting that hangs at Camp Topridge shows Crow, far right, and Thomas, second from right, smoking cigars at the resort. They are joined by lawyers Peter Rutledge, Leonard Leo and Mark Paoletta, from left. Credit:Painting by Sharif Tarabay

That’s what guests of billionaire Harlan Crow were told about a cruise on his yacht, the Michaela Rose. Among those guests was Justice Clarence Thomas. Many times on the yacht. And he never disclosed most of Crow’s generous trips and resort stays.

ProPublica this morning published a long description of Crow’s generosity to his friends Clarence and Ginni.

The pair have become genuine friends, according to people who know both men. 

It’s touching, and a nice complement to the Thomases’ penchant for parking their RV in Walmart parking lots.

For more than two decades, Thomas has accepted luxury trips virtually every year from the Dallas businessman without disclosing them, documents and interviews show. A public servant who has a salary of $285,000, he has vacationed on Crow’s superyacht around the globe. He flies on Crow’s Bombardier Global 5000 jet. He has gone with Crow to the Bohemian Grove, the exclusive California all-male retreat, and to Crow’s sprawling ranch in East Texas. And Thomas typically spends about a week every summer at Crow’s private resort in the Adirondacks.

The extent and frequency of Crow’s apparent gifts to Thomas have no known precedent in the modern history of the U.S. Supreme Court.

These trips appeared nowhere on Thomas’ financial disclosures. His failure to report the flights appears to violate a law passed after Watergate that requires justices, judges, members of Congress and federal officials to disclose most gifts, two ethics law experts said. He also should have disclosed his trips on the yacht, these experts said.

Thomas did not respond to a detailed list of questions.

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