It was no doubt inevitable when news broke that GOP presidential candidate Herman Cain was once accused of sexual harassment that his defenders would rush to compare him to Justice Clarence Thomas. Both men are black! And conservative! And they were once accused of doing vaguely similar things! Clearly this must be a liberal plot:
Ann Coulter said it first, in a Sunday night interview with Fox News when the Politico story first broke: “This is a high-tech lynching.”
“In the eyes of the liberal media, Herman Cain is just another uppity black American who has had the audacity to leave the liberal plantation. So they must destroy him, just as they tried destroying Clarence Thomas,” wrote Brent Bozell of the Media Research Center.
Rush Limbaugh also lashed out at the news media for pursuing “the ugliest racial stereotypes they can to attack a black conservative.” He went on to say on his radio show: “This is about blacks and Hispanics getting uppity.”
The allegations against Cain, which have yet to be proven or disproven, obviously have nothing to do with Justice Thomas. It is impossible to imagine that when two women accused Cain of sexual harassment in the 1990s, they envisioned Cain’s future presidential campaign and hoped to scuttle it by reenacting the Thomas scandal with themselves in the role of Anita Hill. Yet, while the similar allegations against the two men are merely a coincidence, Cain and Thomas do share one very important trait in common — their utter disregard for the Constitution.
Upon joining the Supreme Court, Thomas embarked on an Ahab-like quest to declare most of the Twentieth Century unconstitutional. In three separate cases — U.S. v. Lopez, U.S. v. Morrison, and Gonzales v. Raich — Thomas claimed that the constitutional basis of national labor laws and most national civil rights laws is “at odds with the constitutional design.” It’s difficult to count how many laws would simply cease to exist under Thomas’ vision of the law, but a short list includes the federal ban on workplace discrimination, laws protecting older Americans and Americans with disabilities, the national minimum wage, national child labor laws and the federal ban on whites-only lunch counters.
Stunningly, Cain goes even further in his belief that the Constitution is nothing more than a Tea Party manifesto. Under Cain’s vision of the Constitution, Medicare and Medicaid are also unconstitutional — as are many things that are expressly authorized by the Constitution such as national bankruptcy laws. Cain claims an unconstitutional power to lock his agenda in place permanently once it passes Congress, and his unconstitutional immigration policy seems designed to undermine America’s relations with other nations.
Cain, of course, also named Thomas as a “model” for the kind of justices he would appoint if elected president. Given their shared disdain for the Constitution, there should be little doubt as to why.