Justice Brett Kavanaugh has declined more than $600,000 raised for him and his family through a GoFundMe campaign during his confirmation process.
John Hawkins, who started the fundraiser that garnered $611,645 from more than 13,000 donors by Oct. 6, posted an update Wednesday that explained it would be against judicial ethics for Kavanaugh to accept the money. Hawkins runs Right Wing News and he writes a weekly column for PJ Media.
"Justice Kavanaugh did not authorize the use of his name to raise funds in connection with the GoFundMe campaign. He was not able to do so for judicial ethics reasons. Judicial ethics rules caution judges against permitting the use of the prestige of judicial office for fund-raising purposes. Justice Kavanaugh will not accept any proceeds from the campaign, nor will he direct that any proceeds from the campaign be provided to any third party. Although he appreciates the sentiment, Justice Kavanaugh requests that you discontinue the use of his name for any fund-raising purpose," Kavanaugh's legal team wrote in a statement posted by Hawkins in an update on the fundraiser page.
Hawkins also learned that Kavanaugh's family would not direct the funds to a charity for the same reasons.
"The last thing any of us want is for our attempt to help Judge Kavanaugh’s family to be used against him. Given the strictness of the ethics rules and the possibility that the Judge could get in trouble if he’s tied to this in any way, I made it clear that we wouldn’t want a public 'Thank you' that could potentially be used against him," Hawkins wrote.
College professor Christine Blasey Ford accused Kavanaugh of sexual misconduct which led to an FBI investigation. The FBI found no evidence of corroboration regarding the woman's accusation. Kavanaugh was confirmed Oct. 6 to the U.S. Supreme Court.
Where will the money go?
According to an update made Wednesday, Hawkins took it upon himself to research which charities Kavanaugh has supported in the past and decided the money would be donated to the Archdiocese of Washington, which runs the Catholic Youth Organization.
"Since they are not allowed to suggest a charity, I did some research on charities supported by the Judge and settled on the Archdiocese of Washington which runs the Catholic Youth Organization (CYO)," Hawkins said.
Kavanaugh has coached the girls' basketball team at CYO, he said during his confirmation hearings.
"After talking to the Archdiocese of Washington about the best way to use the funds to help the sort of kids Brett Kavanaugh has been working with, we’re going to split the money between three of their programs: The Catholic Youth Organization (CYO), the Tuition Assistance Fund, and the Victory Youth Center," according to Hawkins.
The update also gave contributors the option to withdraw their donations if they didn't want their money going to the selected charity. The balance Friday morning had dropped to $553,090.
GoFundMe also provided a list of the supportive comments made to Kavanaugh and his family, which Hawkins said he has forwarded for them to read.