WASHINGTON — Anita Hill said she has no reason to apologize for accusing then-Supreme Court justice nominee Clarence Thomas of sexually harassing her, in an issue that Thomas's wife has reopened 19 years after his confirmation hearings.
Virginia Thomas left a voicemail message on Hill's office phone over the weekend, asking her to say she is sorry for the allegations that surfaced at Thomas' confirmation hearings for a seat on the high court bench in 1991.
Hill, now a Brandeis University professor, called the message "inappropriate" and she has no reason to atone.
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"I have no intention of apologizing because I testified truthfully about my experience and I stand by that testimony," she said in a statement obtained by NBC News.
Thomas wants a 'full explanation'
"I would love you to consider an apology sometime and some full explanation of why you did what you did with my husband," the voicemail said in part, according to NBC News. "So give it some thought and certainly pray about this and come to understand why you did what you did."
Thomas said in a statement that her call was an attempt at "extending an olive branch" to Hill.
Reporters approached Hill at her home Wednesday morning, but she declined to say anything more, adding that she was on her way to campus. Brandeis spokesman Andrew Gully said in a statement Wednesday that Hill "is in class and will not have further comment."
He said Hill could not tell whether the call was a prank, which prompted her to turn it over to university police.
The department passed it to the FBI's Boston field office, Gully added. FBI Special Agent Jason Pack, a spokesman at bureau headquarters in Washington, declined to comment on the voicemail.Video: Hill tries to move past Thomas phone call (on this page)
However, a senior FBI official told NBC News on Wednesday that there was no investigation because no crime was committed.
The Supreme Court, for its part, said there will be no comment from Justice Thomas on the controversy. A court spokesperson says Thomas was traveling.
'No offense' intended
Virginia Thomas is a longtime conservative activist and founder of a new nonprofit group, Liberty Central, which opposes what she has characterized as the leftist "tyranny" of the Obama administration and congressional Democrats.
She was a keynote speaker earlier this month in Richmond, Va., at a state convention billed as the largest Tea Party event ever.
"I did place a call to Ms. Hill at her office extending an olive branch to her after all these years, in hopes that we could ultimately get passed [sic] what happened so long ago," Thomas said in a statement. "That offer still stands, I would be very happy to meet and talk with her if she would be willing to do the same.
"Certainly no offense was ever intended."
Hill had worked for Clarence Thomas in two federal government jobs before President George H.W. Bush named him as his pick for the Supreme Court.
During his Senate confirmation hearings, Thomas adamantly denied Hill's accusations that he made inappropriate sexual remarks, including references to pornographic movies.
Thomas said he did talk about X-rated movies while at Yale Law School, adding that so did many other young people in the 1970s.
Thomas speaks out
The allegations nearly derailed his nomination and sparked a national debate about sexual harassment on the job. Thomas called the nationally televised hearings a "high-tech lynching."
He broke a 16-year silence about the hearings in a 2007 book, "My Grandfather's Son," writing that Hill was a mediocre employee who was used by political opponents to make claims she had been sexually harassed.
The justice's wife first suggested Hill apologize in interviews the couple gave after the release of the book.
Hill had worked for Thomas at the Education Department and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. She first made her allegations after Thomas had been nominated to the high court, 10 years after she began working for him and only after she was contacted by congressional investigators.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.