One of the Supreme Court’s most reliably conservative justices wanted liberal hero George McGovern to be president in 1972.
Clarence Thomas told an audience at Pittsburgh’s Duquesne Law School he voted for McGovern but said he doesn’t really like politics, CBS Pittsburgh reported Wednesday.
McGovern, who lost badly to Richard Nixon, opposed the Vietnam War and championed liberal causes until he died at the age of 90. Republicans portrayed him as a “cowardly left-winger,” according to his New York Times obituary.
Thomas is more of a hero to the right, described as the most conservative justice in 80 years. He was just 24 when he voted for McGovern though and had yet to read a conservative book that he would later cite as one of his greatest influences.
Thomas’ conservative bent also developed after he graduated from Yale Law in 1974. He says he had a hard time finding work because employers assumed he had got into the Ivy League school because he’s black.
Now, Thomas is a sharp critic of affirmative action, a classic liberal policy. He didn’t say at the Duquesne Law School whether he’d voted for Barack Obama in the recent presidential elections.
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