SCOTUS: Is it Set?

Not yet. But I think it’s close.

In spite of today’s Senate Judiciary Committee hearing in which Dr. Christine Ford and Judge Kavanaugh gave separate testimony regarding Ford’s allegations of sexual assault by Kavanaugh, there really is no “there-there.” Those who were expecting to come away from the hearing with proof of one or the other telling the truth while the other one lied about sexual assault came away disappointed.

I watched all 7.5 hours of the hearing. At times it was gut-wrenching, nauseating, and infuriating. More than anything, the hearing was a bad imitation of a Barnum and Bailey circus. And there were plenty of clowns in the act.

At the center of the hearing was the testimony of the accuser: Dr. Christine Blasey Ford. She testified first, without Judge Kavanaugh in the room. After a lunch break, Judge Kavanaugh testified. No one lit the fuse on the fireworks until Kavanaugh showed up. And the fireworks ensued — with much drama, grandstanding, and fanfare. Senator Lindsey Graham of South Carolina actually stole the show during Kavanaugh’s questioning:

Graham’s outrage came after his Democrat counterparts on the Committee derided Kavanaugh in pretty much every way they possibly could. His testimony above tells the entire story of Graham’s feelings on the hearings.

Christine Blasey Ford: Testimony

Regarding Ford’s testimony, she simply repeated her claim of sexual assault against her by a teenage Brett Kavanaugh from 36 years ago. She repeated (under questioning) the names of those she previously named as witnesses. She repeated her claims about Kavanaugh and his friend Judge being in the room. She repeated several inconsistencies in her story that were already out in public from details leaked to the press apparently by members (or staff) of Democrats on the committee. She spoke quietly, seemed puzzled at questions fairly often, and responded in a voice that has been characterized as “Up-Talk.” (that is a trait used by some who when speaking make the last words of a sentence go up in pitch. Professionals say doing so is an effort to draw sympathy from listeners as well as to sound/seem victimized)

Obviously, there is NO way to verify the veracity of her testimony. Why? In her case, the 4 people she named as witnesses of the Kavanaugh sexual assault alleged to have been committed by Kavanaugh have all in affidavits provided to the Judiciary Committee denied even being at the party, knowing about the party, knowing where the alleged party was held, and in one case, even knowing Brett Kavanaugh. Each of the 4 gave those under threat of felony for lying.

Here are bullet-point items that raised some eyebrows regarding Ford’s testimony and circumstances surrounding her way of coming forward to testify:

  • She wanted anonymity. She contacted her Congresswoman first, then wrote that Congresswoman the letter with details and gave a copy to Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-CA);
  • Even while claiming she wanted anonymity, Ford reached out to the Washington Post to tell her story. She gave her full story to a Post reporter who wrote and published it;
  • Senator Charles Grassley (R-IA) as Chair of the Committee, when told Ford hated to fly and therefore did not want to come before the Committee in D.C., offered for the Committee to go to California to meet with her anywhere and anytime. In her testimony, she shared details of numerous trips she has made in her work and for personal purposes in which she flew all over the world. It was revealed AFTER the hearing that she had NOT been in California when Grassley’s offer was made to go to her in California. Ford was actually in Delaware, just a short distance away from Washington D.C. No explanation for her lack of candor was given;
  • Ford was definitive in her description of what happened during the incident: she remembered that she drank just 1 beer at the party, stated emphatically who the 4 others were at the party, what Kavanaugh and Judge allegedly did to her, who all were in the house, how she prevented what she thought was going to be a rape, and even the sounds of the 2 boys going down the stairs after she was able to get into a locked bathroom in avoiding an attack. Yet she did NOT know the location of the house where party and attack occurred, who the house belonged to, who took her to the party, or who took her home. She also has no memory of the date of the party;
  • Details in the Post story differed in part from her accounts of the “event” that her therapist put in her interview notes. Ford had no explanation for the differences other than the therapist’s notes were wrong;
  • The only explanation she had for any of the named witnesses not corroborating her story (and their even refuting her story) was that one of those witnesses — her best friend — has been having serious “medical issues.”

Committee Democrats lobbed nothing but softballs at Ford, each lauding her for coming forward with the sexual abuse charges. None asked her a single tough question. Republicans deferred their questioning to a female rape victim legal expert. (In my estimation, their doing so was a huge mistake) This rape expert is an Arizona attorney who prosecutes sex crime perpetrators and simply took too much time asking her questions that were often benign. (Republicans in questioning Kavanaugh replaced her with the normal process in which Senators asked questions)

Brett Kavanaugh: Testimony

  • If you missed the hearing — especially the testimony of Brett Kavanaugh — I encourage you to search online, find it and listen to it. If you have young children or teenagers, I encourage you to include them. His opening remarks were historical, bombastic, and challenging. He called out Senate Democrat Committee members for orchestrating what he called a lynching and a circus, multiple times charging those Democrats with destroying his credibility, his reputation and that of his family, and doing so in retribution against Donald Trump for beating Hillary Clinton in 2016. He likened it to the 1991 Supreme Court confirmation hearings of Justice Clarence Thomas, in which a surprise last-minute sexual attack was made by Anita Hill in testimony against Thomas.
  • The common thread throughout his testimony was that EVERY Democrat implored Kavanaugh to ask, request, implore, and even demand for President Trump to “make” the FBI investigate Ford’s allegations against him before his confirmation goes to the full Senate for a vote. Each time, Judge Kavanaugh made it clear he is committed to doing anything that the Judicial Committee requests, even if they asked for another FBI hearing. Senator Grassley several times interrupted, making it clear that the Committee has an investigative staff comprised of G.O.P. and Democrat staffers who had already investigated the Ford charges. That did not stop Democrats from badgering Kavanaugh. Senator Kamala Harris (D-CA) was the most noxious in her questioning, demeaning Kavanaugh for not demanding another FBI investigation.

At this point, let me address the demands for this second FBI investigation: in Senate confirmation investigations, the FBI exclusively performs those for every nominee. They had investigated Kavanaugh 6 times for previous nominations. None of these allegations surfaced in this most recent investigation or any previous investigation. It was made clear (though Dem Senate members ignore the fact) that the FBI does only background investigations, that the allegations made by Ford and the other women were criminal in nature. The FBI, therefore, has no jurisdiction — Montgomery County, Maryland law enforcement would investigate any allegations of criminal wrongdoing — not the FBI.

It was also made clear that for any agency to launch such an investigation, basics must be provided by any accuser: the nature of the crime, who committed the crime, where the crime was committed, names and details of potential witnesses, and when the alleged attack occurred. MONTGOMERY COUNTY POLICE WOULD NOT BE ABLE TO INVESTIGATE THIS ALLEGATION WITHOUT FORD (OR SOMEONE) PROVIDING THAT INFORMATION.

Ford’s cries and that of every Democrat on the Committee and in Congress for the FBI came even though ALL committee members knew the above information would be required for anyone to begin an investigation. They also knew that there is NO statute of limitations in Maryland for sexual assault. With credible evidence, law enforcement could still prosecute Kavanaugh for Ford’s allegations if probable cause was found.

The Ultimate Travesty

Republicans pretty much nationwide have blasted Senate Democrats for several weeks over Democrat handling of this confirmation process. Why? It became obvious early on that Democrats care not for Kavanaugh’s experience, judicial expertise, or any other of his qualifications for the job of Supreme Court Justice. Obviously their desire is to delay any Kavanaugh confirmation hearing by painting him with as vile and salacious allegations as possible to totally discredit him, keep him or any other Conservative from becoming SCOTUS Justice. Senate Democrats have NO regard for the truth, the standard of the presumption of innocence, the cost to the nation of disallowing who is probably the most qualified person in the U.S. to hold that position, while simultaneously destroying his life and that of his family.

Senate Democrats purpose: keep a conservative majority from controlling the Supreme Court. Their goal: protect Roe v. Wade in doing so.

Their war to accomplish that goal was made obvious with the revelation of specific actions by the Ranking Member: Dianne Feinstein (D-CA). She received the letter from Ford July 30, 2018, detailing Ford’s allegations against Kavanaugh of sexual assault. Senate rules require any member receiving such information to do two things: forward the allegations to the FBI immediately to be included in their nomination investigation and to simultaneously share the information with fellow members of the committee. Feinstein knew both were required of her, yet she did neither.

Why? She said she did so because of the request by Ford for anonymity. But Feinstein knew that her forwarding the letter to fellow committee members and the FBI would  NOT violate her promise to Ford for anonymity. Actually, doing so would have protected her identity. Instead it was leaked to the press which began the normal press feeding frenzy and the Post story was published.

Feinstein by turning that letter over to the FBI July 30th would have allowed a confidential and thorough investigation of Ford’s allegations by Montgomery County well before the Kavanaugh hearings began. Yet NO question in the 30-hours of Committee hearings was asked of Kavanaugh about the allegation even with the Ford allegations being in the hands of Feinstein. Feinstein herselft did not even ask Kavanaugh about it in her 40-minute private meeting with the nominee!

Feinstein’s motive could only be one and on only: stop Brett Kavanaugh at any cost.

Summary

The only Constitutional role in this process of the Senate is “Advice and Consent” in confirmation proceedings. This Senate Judiciary Committee took it upon themselves to orchestrate an unethical if not illegal plan to thwart the Senate’s 200-year-old confirmation process purely for political purposes.

Very few are surprised at their actions, I am sure. Many if not most are disappointed.

Think about this: the United States of America was just about to be robbed of the services of who many are calling THE most qualified Supreme Court Justice nominee of the last century.

Shame on those Democrats! Thank God for the fortitude shown today by Judge Kavanaugh to stand firm in the face of pure partisanship in Senate Democrats’ efforts to stop his confirmation. He had help from his friend Senator Lindsey Graham as shown in the video above.

I may be counting chickens before they hatch, but, “Ladies and Gentlemen, I’d like to be the first to introduce to you the next Justice of the United States Supreme Court: Brett Kavanaugh!”

“So It Is Written…So Let it be Done!”

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One thought on “SCOTUS: Is it Set?

  1. Norm Ahearn Reply

    Thanks Dan. Factual and accurate.

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