Legal expert highlights a ‘very interesting omission’ in Clarence Thomas’ controversial abortion opinion
Clarence Thomas (Photo by Saul Loeb for AFP)

Speaking on MSNBC this Monday, Yale Law School lecturer Linda Greenhouse addresses Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas' opinion in the wake of the Court's reversal of Roe v. Wade, where he wrote that the court must revisit past landmark decisions.

Thomas, one of the most conservative justices on the court, wrote that "in future cases" also involving privacy "we should reconsider."

Thomas cited Griswold v Connecticut, which enshrined the right to contraception in 1965; Lawrence v. Texas, which struck down laws penalizing same-sex relationships in 2003, and Obergefell v. Hodges, the 2015 ruling protecting marriage for all.

According to Greenhouse, there was one past ruling that Thomas curiously failed to mention.

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"I think we disregard what [Justice Thomas] has to say at our peril," Greenhouse said. "I'll just say, in this list of Supreme Court precedents based on the notion that the due process clause has some substantive content of liberty and equality, he left out on -- I mean, he named contraception, he named LGBTQ rights, he named same-sex marriage -- what he didn't mention was interracial marriage."

Greenhouse was referring to the Loving v. Virginia decision in 1967, which ruled that laws banning interracial marriage violate the Equal Protection and Due Process Clauses of the Fourteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Thomas, who is Black, is married to Ginni Thomas, who is white.

"It's as if the court has taken a kind of Roto-Rooter to constitutional law as we've known it in modern times," Greenhouse added.

Same-sex marriage remains a high-value target for Republicans and the religious right in the United States.

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Thomas argued that, since previous decisions were based on the same provision of the constitution on privacy as abortion rights, the court has "a duty to 'correct the error' established in those precedents."

He also argued it would be necessary to analyze whether other passages of the constitution "guarantee the myriad rights" generated by the right to privacy.

Thomas -- whose wife has pushed false claims that Donald Trump won the last election -- was the only judge making such arguments out of the nine who sit on America's top court.

Watch video below.

With additional reporting by AFP

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