Toobin Calls Clarence Thomas ‘Disgraceful,’ CNN’s Wolf Blitzer Hails ‘Excellent Article’

CNN anchor Wolf Blitzer brought Jeffrey Toobin aboard Monday’s The Situation Room to expound on his New Yorker magazine blog, “Clarence Thomas’s Disgraceful Silence,” posted on Friday. After quoting how Toobin derided Thomas as an “embarrassing” justice, Blitzer ended the segment by endorsing Toobin’s screed denigrating Thomas, trumpeting: “It’s an excellent article in the new issue of The New Yorker.”

Blitzer set up the February 24 interview on the 5 PM EST show: “It’s now been eight years since Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas has asked a question during the Supreme Court’s oral arguments. And writing in the new issue of The New Yorker magazine, one of the country’s top Supreme Court experts calls Thomas’ behavior, quote ‘embarrassing’ and ‘disgraceful.’ That expert happens to be our own CNN senior legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin.”

Audio: MP3 clip

Blitzer read from the article and got a comment from Toobin before the two moved on to talking about why the Court does not allow video cameras to record its proceedings. After that, Blitzer praised the post as quoted above.

An excerpt from Toobin’s “Clarence Thomas’s Disgraceful Silence” blog post:

As of this Saturday, February 22nd, eight years will have passed since Clarence Thomas last asked a question during a Supreme Court oral argument. His behavior on the bench has gone from curious to bizarre to downright embarrassing, for himself and for the institution he represents....

By refusing to acknowledge the advocates or his fellow-Justices, Thomas treats them all with disrespect. It would be one thing if Thomas’s petulance reflected badly only on himself, which it did for the first few years of his ludicrous behavior. But at this point, eight years on, Thomas is demeaning the Court. Imagine, for a moment, if all nine Justices behaved as Thomas does on the bench. The public would rightly, and immediately, lose all faith in the Supreme Court. Instead, the public has lost, and should lose, any confidence it might have in Clarence Thomas.

For Monday’s “Best of the Web Today,” in “Blintz Krieg: Jeffrey Toobin’s bizarre attack on Justice Thomas,” the Wall Street Journal’s James Taranto dissected Toobin’s flawed reasoning.

— Brent Baker is the Steven P.J. Wood Senior Fellow and Vice President for Research and Publications at the Media Research Center. Follow Brent Baker on Twitter.