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For the last two years, Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas has consistently recused himself in cases in which Wachovia Bank is a party — most notably the landmark decision last week in Watters v. Wachovia Bank, a win for federal regulation of national bank subsidiaries. On Monday, Thomas stepped aside in the denial of review of yet another Wachovia case — as well as in Turnbaugh v. National City Bank of Indiana, which did not involve Wachovia directly but raised the same issue as the Watters case.

Thomas’ financial disclosure form reveals no ownership of Wachovia stock, so what gives? Thomas does not reveal his reasons for recusal in public, but Legal Times has just confirmed that Thomas’ son Jamal works at Wachovia Securities, a part of Wachovia Corp., at its headquarters in Richmond, Va. We haven’t been able to learn his title or what area he works in, but that is almost certainly the explanation for his father’s recusal.

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