The Kavanaugh Controversy
As Yogi Bera famously said, “It’s déjà vu all over again.”
As many of you know, I served as chairman of the Citizens Committee to Confirm Clarence Thomas in 1991. I was in the hearing room when a surprise witness named Anita Hill came forward and made charges that were not 35 years old but only 10 years. It was a classic he said/she said confrontation.
Hill could not prove her claims in any substantial way. And of course, Thomas could not prove the opposite. But he went on the attack, accusing Senate Democrats of a “high-tech lynching.” Thankfully, that smear attempt failed and Thomas was confirmed 52 to 48.
Fast forward to today. We are in the #MeToo era. And a political leftist in California is making charges against a conservative Supreme Court nominee.
It would not be wise for those of us who support Judge Kavanaugh to belittle Christine Ford. That said, there are serious questions being raised about her 35-year-old claim.
For example, the other individual who Ford insists witnessed the alleged assault, Mark Judge, says her accusation is “just absolutely nuts.” In addition, Ford has a history of left-wing activism.
Meanwhile, it is worth reiterating what we do know about Judge Brett Kavanaugh, namely that he has by all other accounts led an exceptionally decent life.
He has undergone six FBI investigations in his career. Four occurred during his time at the Bush White House and two occurred during his tenure as a federal judge. I have been through several FBI investigations and a colonoscopy is preferable.
They examine you inside and out. FBI agents talk to your friends, neighbors, classmates, and employers. They review everything you can imagine, as well as things you would never think of.
Yet nothing even remotely resembling Ford’s accusation ever surfaced in any of those past investigations.
In addition, we have the public statements made by scores of women from both political parties, including liberals, praising Judge Kavanaugh. His female law clerks have praised him.
Sixty-five women who have known Kavanaugh since high school signed a letter testifying to his character. Dozens of parents from the youth basketball team that Kavanaugh coached have praised his values.
I cannot imagine what Judge Kavanaugh and his wife and two daughters are going through now, as their family is being dragged through the mud.
Senate Democrats are making all kinds of demands right now. They want the confirmation hearings to stop. They want another FBI investigation. They want Professor Ford to testify.
Sadly, this controversy has already been a victory of sorts for Senate Democrats. Every one of the vulnerable liberal senators running in states that Trump won now has the perfect excuse to vote against Kavanaugh. And they can even appear noble in the process.
For example, Indiana’s Joe Donnelly, who voted for Neil Gorsuch’s confirmation, is joining the call to delay the hearings.
And, of course, anti-Trump Republicans like Bob Corker and Jeff Flake are joining the Left’s calls to stall the nominee. Thanks for nothing!
Over the weekend, Sen. Dick Durbin tweeted the following:
“If the #MeToo movement has taught us anything, it is that we must respect and listen to survivors of sexual assault, regardless of the age of those involved or when the alleged attack took place.”
Juanita Broaddrick replied, “Well, Dick, do I have a story for you. Once upon a time Bill Clinton raped me.”
Rep. Keith Ellison, the deputy chairman of the Democrat National Committee and current candidate for Minnesota attorney general, has been credibly accused of abuse by two women. There have been no calls from the Left for these women to be heard.
And Debra Katz, the attorney representing Christine Ford, is a big Democrat donor who mocked Paula Jones and defended Al Franken’s sexual harassment. She also denounced Trump supporters as “miscreants,” adding, “The term ‘basket of deplorables’ is far too generous a description.”
Yesterday was Constitution Day. On that day in 1787, the delegates to the Constitutional Convention signed the document that would become the “owner’s manual” of the American republic. In 2004, Congress passed a law recognizing Sept. 17th as a day to celebrate that great document and the vision of our Founding Fathers.
Sadly, our educational institutions are failing to teach the basics of the Constitution. One recent survey found that 40% of Americans were unable to name even one of the five rights guaranteed by the First Amendment.
The Annenberg Public Policy Center reports that only 32% of Americans were able to name the three branches of government, while 33% couldn’t name any. And 41% incorrectly believe that both the House and the Senate must vote to confirm Supreme Court nominees.
Please take a moment today to talk to your children and grandchildren about the Constitution. Tell them what they are not learning in school — that America is unique because we believe our rights come from God, not government, and that government was meant to be limited so that we could be free.
Kudos to Karen Tumulty of The Washington Post. While researching the life of former First Lady Nancy Reagan, Tumulty made an extraordinary find. Lost in a cardboard box of Mrs. Reagan’s personal effects was a hand-written four-page letter from then-President Ronald Reagan to his father-in-law, Loyal Davis.
The letter was written in August 1982, just days before Davis passed away, and the president of the United States was sharing the Gospel with his father-in-law, an avowed atheist.
It is a truly remarkable letter that removes any doubt about the faith of President Reagan. As Tumulty noted, faith was Reagan’s “starting point, and the core of who he was.” Just consider this quote from Reagan’s letter:
“Either [Jesus] was who he said he was or he was the greatest faker & charlatan who ever lived. But would a liar & faker suffer the death he did when all he had to do to save himself was admit he’d been lying? …
"But for two thousand years he has had more impact on the world than all the teachers, scientists, emperors, generals and admirals who ever lived, all put together.”