If you thought efforts to derail Brett Kavanaugh’s inevitable confirmation had reached peak desperation during Cory Booker’s “Spartacus moment,” think again. It turns out that things could indeed go lower.
Now we have what looks like “one of the dirtiest dirty tricks to damage a nominee in recent history,” from Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif. It’s about a letter that supposedly implicates the nominee in some sexual misconduct while he was in high school, 40 years ago.
So, here’s what we’re supposed to believe:
- That Brett Kavanaugh did something untoward with a woman while they were both in high school.
- That it doesn’t matter that the woman waited over 40 years – which included Kavanaugh’s lengthy political and judicial career – and only came forward after he was nominated to the Supreme Court.
- That accusations made anonymously in a confidential letter ought to be enough to derail the nomination of a Supreme Court justice.
And while that may seem hard for the discerning citizen to swallow, the blue-check bandwagon jumped all over it:
Uh oh, looks like Brett Kavanaugh is about to have his #metoo moment! https://t.co/TFKmiHGc70— Jonathan Boucher (@Jonathan Boucher)1536858083.0
This is why the GOP rush to confirm Kavanaugh is so unconscionable https://t.co/5vnNjq4O3z— Will Bunch Sign Up For My Newsletter (@Will Bunch Sign Up For My Newsletter)1536868311.0
I will somehow contain my shock. Somehow. #Kavanaugh https://t.co/GqXHP7ejB6— Rus McLaughlin (@Rus McLaughlin)1536868363.0
👀 Senator Feinstein doesn't play. This should be a major red flag for any senator considering voting in favor of… https://t.co/hs3I8NAZxj— Deeds Action Fund (@Deeds Action Fund)1536868609.0
Is *anyone* going to be surprised if Brett Kavanaugh turns out to be a #MeToo man? His track record already shows… https://t.co/wtrrileRuR— Litsa Dremousis (@Litsa Dremousis)1536866658.0
"Brett Kavanaugh has some potentially very dark skeletons in his closet, and if Republicans, especially Republican… https://t.co/eNpWcif4uT— Sarah Reese Jones (@Sarah Reese Jones)1536869007.0
A quick point of order before we proceed: Kavanaugh’s nomination wasn’t rushed. Senators had more time to prepare for his hearing than they did for Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s. The process to clear past White House documents was known to all during that time. Everyone had plenty of time to do their homework.
This is a desperation play. One might call it a last-ditch effort, but that’s probably a premature assessment. And far from a long Hail Mary pass on fourth and long, it’s more like running out of bullets and chucking the gun at an assailant in the hopes of giving him a concussion.
There’s another big hitch in the narrative, namely that the letter has been floating around Democratic offices since the summer … you know, when senators were meeting with Kavanaugh and getting ready for the hearing. The timing speaks volumes.
Let’s be serious: If there were anything in the actual content of the letter or its accusations, it would have been leaked well before the hearing and would have been covered nonstop from every possible angle on cable news from its discovery until the final committee vote.
But it wasn’t.
Kavanaugh’s opponents tried going after Kavanaugh’s qualifications, his supposed distance from the “mainstream,” his past rulings, and his financial history and then created a circus around his records from the White House during the hearing.
It all failed. After all of that, the most damaging piece of evidence against Brett Kavanaugh’s overall judgment is how much money he was willing to spend on tickets to watch the Washington Nationals. But he is a D.C.-area native, so he gets a pass on that.
So now we’re down to the weaponization of speculation. It’s not about proving anything; it’s about casting doubt the week before the vote.
But hey, when all else fails, just use your imagination!