Supreme Court justice shares relatable tale of signaling Trump coup support to get back at neighbor.

On Thursday night, the New York Times reported—with photo evidence—that an upside-down American flag was flown outside Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito’s home on Jan. 17, 2021. Such a positioning of the flag, at the time, signaled support for Donald Trump’s effort to “Stop the Steal,” aka overturning the results of the 2020 presidential election.

Given that Alito has ruled on and continues to hear cases that involve Trump and election law, it calls his impartiality—and frankly his connection to reality—into question to find out that he may have believed that Trump should have been reinstalled as president. That’s particularly true given that Jan. 17, 2021, was 11 days after Trump supporters attacked and overran Capitol police in an effort to prevent Congress from certifying Joe Biden’s election—and thus 11 days after Congress returned to its business and formally voted to accept the results. Biden was inaugurated three days later. Jan. 17 would have been an extremely not-legal time to make Donald Trump president again, which is something one would hope a judge would have understood.

Nevertheless! On Friday, Alito spoke to Fox News’ Shannon Bream and blamed the situation on his wife. Really! His wife did it to get back at one of their neighbors, he says.

We don’t support what this neighbor allegedly did next, but that part—putting up a sign to tell your neighbor she was responsible for Jan. 6—is funny.

Ah, well, yes, it was a very heated time … certainly, many of us became heated and supported a coup of some form or another, in that environment … come on, buddy! (Also, the Times cites an email from an Alito neighbor to a relative, written on Jan. 18, 2021, which describes the flag having been up for “several days.” Which is arguably not a “short time.”)

Incidentally, the U.S. Flag Code—which is a matter of suggested protocol and not law—says an upside down is a signal of “distress.” Distress … about your neighbor being a Biden voter? Is that how Betsy Ross and George Washington would have seen it?


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