Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.) framed the battle over President Donald Trump's second Supreme Court nominee in extreme and polarizing terms during a Tuesday news conference, according to The Hill.
Booker, standing alongside Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) and religious leaders, described the nomination of Judge Brett Kavanaugh as a referendum on good and evil.
"I'm here to call on folk to understand that in a moral moment there is no neutral," Booker said. "In a moral moment there is no bystanders. You are either complicit in the evil, you are either contributing to the wrong, or you are fighting against it."
What is he talking about?
Booker, possibly inspired by the religious company at his news conference, continued his sermon on the importance of opposing Kavanaugh (who is also a Christian):
"It doesn't say that I sit in the valley of the shadow of death," Booker said. "It doesn't say I'm sitting on the sidelines in the valley of the shadow of death. It says I am walking through the valley of the shadow of death. It says I am taking agency that I am going to make it through this crisis. And so I am calling on everyone right now who understands what's at stake, who understands who Kavanaugh is. My ancestors said 'if someone shows you who they are, believe them the first time.' He has shown us who he is."
What is 'evil' about Kavanaugh?
Democrats, many of whom vowed to oppose Trump's nominee regardless of who it was, are particularly worried about the impact this nomination could have on abortion rights.
With former Justice Anthony Kennedy potentially being replaced by a conservative justice, Democrats fear that Roe v. Wade could be overturned with Kavanaugh on the bench. Those fears were in place before Trump nominated Kavanaugh, as the president has made clear his intent to nominate pro-life judges.
So when Booker is talking about the nomination in grand, vague biblical terms, what he's really doing is calling anyone who would vote for a pro-life judge "complicit in evil." He's saying that to "walk through the valley of the shadow of death" is to fight to protect abortion.
Regardless of where one falls on the issue of abortion rights, it takes some rigorous mental gymnastics to reconcile that message with the biblical sources he's drawing from.