Then-Supreme Court nominee Clarence Thomas faced sexual misconduct allegations while he was going through the Supreme Court confirmation process in 1991 after being nominated to the court by George H. W. Bush.
On October 11, 1991, Thomas gave a statement before the Senate Judiciary Committee after then-Sen. Joe Biden (D-DE) asked him if he had anything to say regarding the allegations.
"Senator, I would like to start by saying unequivocally, uncategorically, that I deny each and every single allegation against me today that suggested in any way that I had conversations of a sexual nature or about pornographic material with Anita Hill, that I ever attempted to date her, that I ever had any personal sexual interest in her, or that I in any way ever harassed her," Thomas began.
"A second, and I think more important point," Thomas continued. "I think that this today is a travesty. I think that it is disgusting. I think that this hearing should never occur in America. This is a case in which this sleaze, this dirt, was searched for by staffers of members of this committee, was then leaked to the media, and this committee and this body validated it and displayed it at prime time over our entire nation. How would any member on this committee, any person in this room, or any person in this country, would like sleaze said about him or her in this fashion? Or this dirt dredged up and this gossip and these lies displayed in this manner? How would any person like it?"
"The Supreme Court is not worth it. No job is worth it. I am not here for that. I am here for my name, my family, my life, and my integrity," Thomas said. "I think something is dreadfully wrong with this country when any person, any person in this free country would be subjected to this."
"This is not a closed room," Thomas continued. "There was an FBI investigation. This is not an opportunity to talk about difficult matters privately or in a closed environment. This is a circus. It's a national disgrace."
"And from my standpoint as a black American, as far as I'm concerned, it is a high-tech lynching for uppity blacks who in any way deign to think for themselves, to do for themselves, to have different ideas, and it is a message that unless you kowtow to an old order, this is what will happen to you," Thomas declared. "You will be lynched, destroyed, caricatured by a committee of the U.S. -- U.S. Senate, rather than hung from a tree."