Senate Republicans Join Media in Criticizing Justice Alito Over Flag Controversy


Democrats and the press can always count on a few Senate Republicans to partake in the latest far-left scheme to weaken political opposition by undermining solid institutions. The most recent effort involves The New York Times fabricating a flag controversy with a series of frantic stories portraying Justice Samuel Alito as a far-right provocateur because of two flags flown at his East Coast homes. Several Republican senators have joined the criticism.

Earlier this month, The New York Times reported on an American flag that reportedly flew upside down at the judge’s Virginia home. According to the paper, the flag was flown during the turbulent month of President Joe Biden’s inauguration, when the distress flag was sometimes used to show tacit support for Republicans’ efforts to “Stop the Steal.”

“While the flag was up, the court was still contending with whether to hear a 2020 election case, with Justice Alito on the losing end of that decision,” the Times reported. Now, later this spring, “the justices will rule on two climactic cases involving the storming of the Capitol on Jan. 6, including whether Mr. Trump has immunity for his actions.”

The court’s upcoming decisions illustrate why The New York Times is only now raising an issue with the banner more than three years later. The justices will soon issue opinions that could strike at the heart of the Democrats’ 2024 campaign strategy. These cases will decide whether former President Donald Trump enjoys a high enough degree of presidential immunity to avoid far-left prosecution and whether the Department of Justice (DOJ) can impose excess prison time on Jan. 6 defendants.

The paper quoted supposed ethics experts to discredit Justice Alito as an impartial juror, despite Alito’s explanation that his wife, not Alito himself, had raised the banner following a dispute with a neighbor over a profane anti-Trump sign.

“Judicial experts said in interviews that the flag was a clear violation of ethics rules, which seek to avoid even the appearance of bias, and could sow doubt about Justice Alito’s impartiality in cases related to the election and the Capitol riot,” the Times reported.

Truth Voices Senior Legal Correspondent Margot Cleveland, who spent decades as a permanent law clerk developing an expertise in legal ethics, explained why the upside-down flag issue doesn’t require Alito to act.

“For simplicity’s sake, let’s assume Mrs. Alito placed a ‘Stop the Steal’ sign in the front yard of the home she shares with her husband. Such a sign would qualify as political activity within the meaning of the various ethical codes governing judicial conduct,” Cleveland wrote. The sign, she added, “would clearly fit in the ‘should not engage in other political activity’ prohibition” outlined in legal ethics rules. “But it wasn’t Justice Alito who hung the upside-down flag we are hypothesizing was instead a ‘Stop the Steal’ placard — it was Mrs. Alito. And the Code of Conduct does not govern a spouse’s actions.”

Senate Republicans, however, still joined the media bandwagon, giving CNN this headline: “Key GOP Senators Criticize Alito Over Upside-Down Flag Incident.” Lawmakers objecting to Alito’s alleged misconduct include Utah’s Mitt Romney, Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, and John Thune of South Dakota, who wants to be the next GOP Senate chief.

“I don’t know how you explain that,” Thune said of Alito’s invented flag controversy.

“It creates a bad image,” Graham said. “It created a situation that we’re all talking about. So, yeah, I think it was a mistake.”

Romney encouraged lawmakers to “take a look at it.”

“It’s very unfortunate,” Romney said.

The Times followed the initial flag story last week with an even more frantic piece to rebrand an iconic banner from the American Revolution as a symbol of insurgency. On Tuesday, the Times reported that an “Appeal to Heaven” flag, also known as the Pine Tree flag, was flown outside Alito’s New Jersey home on Long Beach Island last summer.

“Two years after an upside-down American flag was flown outside the Virginia home of Justice Samuel A. Alito Jr., another provocative symbol was displayed at his vacation house in New Jersey,” the Times wrote. “This time, it was the ‘Appeal to Heaven’ flag, which, like the inverted U.S. flag, was carried by rioters at the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021.”

Never mind that the Pine Tree flag, which was designed by George Washington’s personal secretary at the start of the war for independence, had just recently flown over San Francisco’s city hall last year.

Tristan Justice
Tristan Justice
Tristan Justice is our western correspondent and the author of Social Justice Redux, a conservative newsletter on culture, health, and wellness. He has also written for The Washington Examiner and The Daily Signal. His work has also been featured in Real Clear Politics and Fox News. Tristan graduated from George Washington University where he majored in political science and minored in journalism.

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