WATCH: Graham calls Supreme Court ethics hearing an ‘assault’ on Justice Thomas

Sen. Lindsey Graham accused Senate Democrats of trying to undermine the validity of the court during a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on Supreme Court ethics reform.

The hearing May 2 examined accusations that Justice Clarence Thomas violated ethics rules by accepting luxury trips from a conservative donor without properly reporting them. But Graham said Democrats were using the hearing to “destroy a conservative court.”

“This assault on Justice Thomas is well beyond ethics. It is about trying to delegitimize a conservative court that was appointed through the traditional process,” Graham said.

The hearing followed reporting by ProPublica and other publications that uncovered Thomas has taken trips that were funded in whole or in part by real estate developer and conservative donor Harlan Crow. Thomas did not disclose the trips — or real estate Crow bought from Thomas — in a potential violation of ethics rules. Thomas has said he received guidance that the trips were considered personal hospitality and therefore not reportable. He said it was his “intent to follow this guidance in the future.”

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