Samuel Alito Tries Pathetic Excuse for That “Stop the Steal” Flag

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All rise for the honorable wife blamer: In cowardly fashion, Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito is blaming his wife for an upside-down American flag that flew outside the couple’s home in January 2021 ahead of Biden’s inauguration, a prominent symbol among the anti-government far-right and which experts say is a clear violation of ethics rules against bias.

In a story first reported by The New York Times on Thursday, the Alitos flew the inverted flag outside their home for “several days” in January 2021, with neighbors photographing it on January 17 and discussing its enduring presence on January 18. While the exact dates it was flown are unknown, the flag flew between the January 6 Capitol riot—where pro-Trump conspiracy theorists and far-right extremists waved that same flag—and the January 20 presidential inauguration of Joe Biden.

Long used as a naval distress symbol, the inverted flag has occasionally been used in anti-war and anti-fascist protests. Now, it most commonly appears among the anti-government far-right—a somewhat ironic choice for the home of a Supreme Court justice, whose work directly influences how the government operates. In January 2021, it was a prominent symbol during the “Stop the Steal” protests against the certification of the presidential election as Trump supporters violently stormed the Capitol.

Justice Alito said the flag was part of a passive-aggressive dispute between his wife, in dire need of a hobby, and their neighbors, who had placed an “anti-Trump sign with an expletive” on their lawn. But that fails to justify what judicial experts say is a clear violation of SCOTUS’s ethics rules, which prohibit even a whiff of bias.

“It might be his spouse or someone else living in his home, but he shouldn’t have it in his yard as his message to the world,” said Amanda Frost, a law professor at the University of Virginia, in an interview with the Times.

The conservative justice previously took an undisclosed luxury fishing trip in 2008 with a Republican billionaire donor who later presented cases to the Supreme Court, apparently in violation of federal law. The corruption-inclined Clarence Thomas and his election denialist wife must be so proud of their little protégés.

In the three years since the flag flew, the Alitos had plenty of time to come up with a better excuse. Claiming it was placed there by an outside agitator would be an easy fan favorite with conservatives. Or they could have claimed they just didn’t realize they put it upside-down because when they were affixing it to the pole a rabid squirrel jumped out of a bush and started attacking them and they were so they just put it up and ran away and were too afraid of the squirrel to leave their house for several days. Sky’s the limit when you’re a judge on the highest court in the land accountable to practically no one with a wife far too invested in wackadoo conspiracy theories.