Kavanaugh Hearing

On July 9th President Trump nominated Brett Kavanaugh to fill the Supreme Court seat left open by Justice Anthony M. Kennedy. Kavanaugh gave this statement at a press conference after the announcement, “I am deeply honored”. Kavanaugh became supported not only by President Trump but by other Republican senators as well.

A month after the nomination announcement, on September 27th sexual allegations against Kavanaugh came forth. In a detailed article by the Washington Post, Christine Blasey Ford, a Palo Alto University professor accused Kavanaugh of sexually assaulting her when they were teenagers. According to the Washington Post this assault happened at a party involving alcohol in the early 1980’s. In the article she states, “He was trying to attack me and remove my clothing.” Dr. Ford had sent a letter to California senator Dianne Feinstein about the sexual assault prior to the release of the article. That letter was later leaked, and Senator Feinstein got the federal investigative authorities involved in the matter. Kavanaugh responded to the allegations by stating, “I categorically and unequivocally deny this allegation. I did not do this back in high school or at any time.”

The allegations and White House statements left many assault victims in an uproar demanding that Mr. Kavanaugh be taken out of the supreme court nomination. The Supreme Court delayed the nomination process for a week before calling a court hearing on September 27th.

The televised court hearing took place at Capitol Hill in Washington, DC leading off with Dr. Ford. Ford had requested that she be kept in separate rooms and away from Kavanaugh throughout the hearing. Ford gave a descriptive testimony of her attack through a shaky voice and a composed posture, although she could not recall all the details of that night. She said she did not come out about the incident back then due to fear. Kavanaugh, who was eager to testify to clear his name, began with a teary speech affirming the senate of his reputation. He pulled out a calendar with detailed events of dates as far back as the early 1980’s. This court hearing was deemed as, “Sadly one of the most shameful chapters in the history of the United States Senate” by Republican of Texas, Senator Ted Cruz.

Prosecutor Rachel Mitchell released a memo on September 30th to all Republican senators stating, “"I do not think that a reasonable prosecutor would bring this case based on the evidence before the committee” this came after the hearing. President Trump ordered an F.B.I. investigation to be reopened on Kavanaugh’s background on October 5th. In the midst of the investigation, Sen. Susan Collins, a Republican from Maine and Sen. Joe Manchin III, a Democrat from West Virginia voted to support Kavanaugh the morning of October 5th despite the allegations.

On October 6th, Brett Kavanaugh was confirmed into the Supreme Court by a 50 to 48 senate vote. As Vice President Mike pence concluded the vote, one woman shouted, "“This is a stain on American history!” Protesters were being dragged out of the Senate's public galleries. According to the New York Times, "Washington had not seen such a brutal nomination fight" since the 1991 sexual assault allegations against Judge Clarence Thomas. President Trump, along with invited reporters watched the televised vote while aboard the Air Force one stating, "“He’s going to go down as a totally brilliant Supreme Court justice for many years.”