WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The wife of U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas said on Tuesday she called the woman at the center of his 1991 confirmation hearings scandal and one news report said she asked Anita Hill to consider apologizing for “what you did with my husband.”
Virginia Thomas left a voice mail last weekend on Hill’s office answering machine at Brandeis University, according to a statement Thomas’ office sent to Reuters. During Clarence Thomas’ confirmation hearings, Hill accused him of sexual harassment. He denied the allegations and was confirmed.
“I did place a call to Ms. Hill at her office extending an olive branch to her after all these years, in hopes that we could ultimately get passed (sic) what happened so long ago,” Virginia Thomas said.
“That offer still stands, I would be very happy to meet and talk with her if she would be willing to do the same. Certainly no offense was ever intended.”
Hill turned the message over to the campus public safety office, which passed it on to the FBI, the Times said, citing Brandeis spokesman Andrew Gulling.
Representatives from the FBI and Brandeis, which is outside Boston, did not immediately return calls for comment.
ABC News on its website provided quotes from what it said was the voice mail:
“Good morning, Anita Hill, it’s Ginny Thomas,” she said, according to ABC News. “I just wanted to reach across the airwaves and the years and ask you to consider something. I would love you to consider an apology sometime and some full explanation of why you did what you did with my husband. So give it some thought and certainly pray about this and come to understand why you did what you did. Okay have a good day.”
Virginia Thomas is a longtime Washington conservative activist who recently founded a nonprofit group Liberty Central, which the Times has portrayed as “dedicated to opposing what she characterizes as the leftist ‘tyranny’ of President Barack Obama and Democrats in Congress.”
Hill was a University of Oklahoma law professor who publicly accused Clarence Thomas of making sexually inappropriate comments when they worked together at the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. The accusations, during Senate committee hearings on his nomination for the Supreme Court in October 1991, made her a lightning rod for Republican attacks.
Reporting by Joanne Allen, Writing by Doina Chiacu; Editing by Peter Cooney