If you went to bed early, you may be waking up to shocking news this morning. Not one but two bombshell stories exploded last night in the Brett Kavanaugh confirmation saga.
The first story broke in a The New Yorker piece reported by Jane Mayer and Ronan Farrow involving Deborah Ramirez, an undergrad classmate of Kavanaugh’s at Yale. She alleged that while at a dorm-room drinking party with multiple witnesses Kavanaugh exposed himself to her in what the reporting suggests was a lewd and assaulting prank.
Immediately following the act, a classmate shouted to the rest of the dorm what Kavanaugh had just done, which suggests that substantial corroborating testimony is available here. Beyond the technicalities of the law, Kavanaugh’s behavior in this instance was disgusting and far beyond the boundaries of “innocent college prank”.
The second allegation was a bit less specific, but significantly more troubling and potentially explosive. It was made by attorney Michael Avenatti, who represents a woman “with credible information” about Kavanaugh’s participation in sexual crimes in high school, claiming that Avanatti is “aware of substantial evidence” that Kavanaugh and drinking buddy Mark Judge “would participate in the targeting of women with alcohol/drugs in order to allow a ‘train’ of men to subsequently gang rape them.” Avenatti included in his letter a set of suggested questions for the Senate to ask Kavanaugh, implying that Avenatti already knew the answers to his own satisfaction.
In any sane Congress, at any other time in our history, Kavanaugh would immediately withdraw himself, if the Senate didn’t beat him to it. But the White House is run by an admitted pussy grabber and the old white men who run the Judiciary Committee are terrified of Trump and his (shrinking) base of bigoted old white male supporters.
I’m writing this (as usual) in the wee hours of the morning, and it’s a 50/50 proposition that when I wake up Kavanaugh will either be cast aside OR fully supported by a GOP determined to dig in their heels while jeopardizing their offices and party to stand by a man whose tenure as a judge will be forever tainted, no matter the current outcome. My guess is that they will stick by him because a 5-man majority on the Supreme Court for several decades is their Holy Grail, particularly because this makes all their policy desires bulletproof: overturn Roe, reject gay marriage, reject environmental preservation, reject limits on corporate power, reject limits on religious tyranny, reject limits on Trump’s tyranny.
Let’s be crystal clear on the portrait of Brett Kavanaugh that has emerged. He’s a sleazy frat bro and drunken party boy whose conduct with women while a young adult was profoundly inappropriate and possibly felonious. Any one of these allegations should render him unfit to serve on the Supreme Court, but all three of them together (assuming more don’t surface) paint a disgusting picture that the GOP will continue to embrace at their lethal peril. They already look bad. And if evidence continues to build to support these allegations, the GOP will look even worse as we approach the midterms.
This is the party of John Faso. Smiling “professionals” with wives and children who actively support or tacitly condone predatory men and abject misogyny. Faso’s voting record on women’s issues puts him squarely at the center of his party’s inability to accept women’s equality and control over their own bodies. It’s long past time–but never too late–to reject these GOP retrogrades and stop them from making policies and laws. Mitch McConnell and Orrin Hatch and the whole stinking lot of them had their day, made America worse, and now we need to take control and send real people to Congress to undo the mess these immoral corporate whores have created to satisfy their craven base. We are the majority, and getting larger every day.
Let’s keep working to Fire Feckless Faso and elect Antonio Delgado…