Clarence and Ginni Thomas: Politics, Power and the Supreme Court (full documentary)
10 May 2023
As controversy erupts around Clarence and Ginni Thomas, this two-hour documentary special tells the inside story of their path to power.
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Over the past three decades, Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas has risen to the center of power in Washington, impacting issues affecting millions of Americans — from abortion to affirmative action. By his side has been his wife and best friend, Ginni Thomas. Together, the Thomases have left an indelible mark on America — in the legal realm and in conservative politics. But what has fueled their rise and expanded influence, and what have been the consequences?
“Clarence and Ginni Thomas: Politics, Power and the Supreme Court” is a FRONTLINE production with the Kirk Documentary Group. The director is Michael Kirk. The producers are Michael Kirk, Mike Wiser and Vanessa Fica. The writers are Michael Kirk and Mike Wiser. The reporters are Vanessa Fica and Jane Mayer. The editor-in-chief and executive producer of FRONTLINE is Raney Aronson-Rath.
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FRONTLINE is produced at GBH in Boston and airs nationwide on PBS.
Funding for FRONTLINE is provided through the support of PBS viewers and by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.
Additional funding is provided by the Abrams Foundation; Park Foundation; the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation; and the FRONTLINE Journalism Fund with major support from Jon and Jo Ann Hagler on behalf of the Jon L. Hagler Foundation, and additional support from Koo and Patricia Yuen.
Funding for "Clarence and Ginni Thomas: Politics, Power and the Supreme Court" is provided by the Jonathan Logan Family Foundation and The WNET Group’s Preserving Democracy, a public media reporting initiative.
Prologue - 0:00
Clarence and Ginni Thomas - 0:34
Clarence Thomas’ Childhood in the Segregated South - 3:33
Clarence Thomas’ Catholic School Experience - 9:23
Ginni Thomas’ Childhood - 12:15
Clarence Thomas’ Time in the Seminary - 18:15
Clarence Thomas and the Black Power Movement - 24:38
Ginni Lamp’s Role Model: Phyllis Schlafly - 32:37
Clarence Thomas’ Experience at Yale Law School - 36:13
Ginni Lamp’s Experience with Lifespring, a ‘Cult’ - 42:16
Clarence Thomas’ Role in Ronald Reagan’s Administration - 48:34
How Ginni Lamp and Clarence Thomas Met and Married - 1:00:06
Clarence Thomas Becomes a Supreme Court Justice - 1:04:24
Anita Hill, Sexual Harassment Allegations and Clarence Thomas - 1:21:33
How Clarence Thomas Came to Know Conservative Figures Like Rush Limbaugh & Harlan Crow - 1:25:32
Ginni Thomas’ Rise in Republican Politics - 1:36:05
Ginni and Clarence Thomas, “Right-Wing Royalty” - 1:40:06
Clarence Thomas' Influence on the Supreme Court and Key Issues Like Abortion and Affirmative Action - 1:48:06
Credits - 1:51:58