John Oliver to Clarence Thomas: Drive Away from SCOTUS in a New, $2.4 Million Motorcoach!

Comedian John Oliver is offering Clarence Thomas $1 million a year and a luxury motor coach to resign his post on the Supreme Court.

The wild — and Oliver claims, “somehow legal” — offer was made at the end of the 11th-season premiere of Last Week Tonight, the long-running HBO comedy series.

Oliver spent much of the show lampooning the corruption of the Supreme Court. Investigations over recent months — in particular, painstaking reporting by ProPublica — have revealed that conservative justices are living high on the hog thanks to the patronage of right-wing billionaires, many of whom have interests in cases that come before the nation’s highest court.

Thomas is not alone in accepting gifts. Justice Samuel Alito, for example, traveled to a luxury fishing lodge in Alaska with a controversial hedge fund executive, where he dined on king crab legs and quaffed $1,000 bottles of wine. Alito reportedly did not disclose the vacation — or the luxury private jet flight that took him back and forth from Alaska — as gifts.

But as Oliver detailed, Thomas is in a class by himself in accepting lavish perks, travel, and entertainment from billionaire patrons — including dozens of destination vacations and private jet flights, as well as myriad VIP passes to sporting events. Thomas reportedly accepted many of these gifts without disclosing them on annual filings, deeming them as personal hospitality among friends.

Thomas is also famously the owner of a 40-foot motorcoach — think a tour bus decked out as a luxury RV. But instead of purchasing the land-yacht on his own, Thomas reportedly took out a loan from another wealthy benefactor for the nearly quarter-million-dollar purchase price. As congressional documents have revealed, that individual collected interest payments from Thomas for a while, but eventually forgave the debt, effectively gifting the RV to Thomas. “Honestly it’s starting to feel like Thomas doesn’t so much have friends, so much as human ATMs,” Oliver snarked.

The HBO host then wondered aloud what it would be like if Thomas could enjoy the luxury lifestyle to which he so clearly aspires, without all the hard work of carrying water for billionaire interests on the Supreme Court. “Justice Thomas we have a special offer for you tonight,” Oliver said. “We are prepared to offer you $1 million a year — for the rest of your life — if you leave the Supreme Court immediately, and never come back!”

Oliver held up a legal contract and insisted, “This is not a joke! A million dollars a year until you — or I — die.” The host insisted that legal experts have assured him that under the ethics framework of the court (or lack thereof) the illicit-seeming offer was in fact legal. (Oliver added that HBO is not putting up the money, rather that, “I am personally on the hook.”)

Thomas now has a 30-day deadline to make a decision. And to sweeten the pot, Oliver offered the hard-right judge a brand new “condo on wheels” — a $2.4 million motorcoach with a king bed, 1.5 bathrooms, a “fucking fireplace,” four TVs and a residential-sized fridge. The deal is simple, the comedian said:  “All you have to do in return is sign the contract and get the fuck off the Supreme Court.”

Seeking to reassure Thomas, Oliver insisted that the justice’s billionaire buddies would not abandon him if he took the offer and decided to resign. Surely, the lavish hospitality of Thomas’ megarich amigos would not dry up, simply because he no longer had the power to make legal decisions that could help them keep their money, or advance their narrow political and ideological interests.

“That’s the beauty of friendship, Clarence,” Oliver insisted. “If they’re real friends, they’ll love you no matter what your job is.”

More from Rolling Stone

Best of Rolling Stone