Wife of Supreme Court justice meets with U.S. Capitol riot committee

Conservative activist Virginia "Ginni" Thomas, wife of Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, met for about four hours on Thursday with the congressional committee probing the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol by supporters of then-President Donald Trump.

Thomas was seen entering the meeting room used by the House of Representatives select committee for its interviews just before 9:30 a.m. EDT (1330 GMT). She departed at about 1:45 p.m. EDT, having left the room multiple times to huddle with her lawyer.

The panel's chairperson, Democratic Representative Bennie Thompson, told reporters Thomas was answering some questions and had reiterated her belief that the 2020 presidential election was stolen from Trump.

Her attorney, Mark Paoletta, said she had answered all of the committee's questions.

"She was happy to cooperate with the Committee to clear up the misconceptions about her activities surrounding the 2020 elections," he said in a statement.

"As she has said from the outset, Mrs. Thomas had significant concerns about fraud and irregularities in the 2020 election. And, as she told the Committee, her minimal and mainstream activity focused on ensuring that reports of fraud and irregularities were investigated. Beyond that, she played no role in any events after the 2020 election results," Paoletta said.

Thomas, who is active in conservative political circles, attended a rally Trump held shortly before thousands of his supporters stormed the Capitol in an attempt to stop Congress from certifying President Joe Biden's election victory.

At the rally, Trump gave an incendiary speech repeating his false claims that the election was stolen from him through widespread voting fraud, and he urged his supporters to march to the Capitol.

A committee spokesperson did not respond to a request for comment.

The committee had been scheduled to hold a public hearing on Wednesday, but postponed it because of the threat to Florida by powerful Hurricane Ian. read more

The postponement raised the possibility that a recording of Thomas' statements to the panel could be included in the next public hearing.

Thompson said he did not yet have a date for the rescheduled hearing, but that it would take place before the mid-term elections on Nov. 8.