Representative James Clyburn (D., S.C.) said he was unconcerned by his friend Bennie Thompson (D., Miss.) calling Justice Clarence Thomas an “Uncle Tom,” and he declined to condemn the slur on Morning Joe Friday.
“All of us have ways of expressing our disappointments,” Clyburn said. ”I am very disappointed in Clarence Thomas.”
Joe Scarborough asked Clyburn if he too thought the Supreme Court justice was an Uncle Tom. ”Well, I don’t know,” he responded.
Thompson is not the first Democratic politicians to call Justice Thomas an Uncle Tom.
Last summer, Minnesota state representative Ryan Winkler tweeted “#SCOTUS VRA majority is four accomplices to race discrimination and one Uncle Thomas. Marriage decision may blur Court’s backsliding.” There was an immediate backlash and Winkler deleted the tweet.
In February, Alabama state representative Alvin Holmes said he didn’t like Justice Thomas because ”he’s married to a white woman.” Holmes backpedaled, saying he supports interracial marriage, but he maintained that the Supreme Court’s only black justice is an Uncle Tom.