Democrats have corrupted the Senate’s constitutional “advise and consent” role in Supreme Court nominations and turned it into a tool for political “search and destroy” campaigns, Judge Brett Kavanaugh declared Thursday in a dramatic and perhaps desperate attempt to rescue his appointment and reclaim his integrity.
They turned “advise and consent into search and destroy,” Kavanaugh declared, staring intently at the Democrats on the Senate Committee on the Judiciary, who have accused him of being “evil” and guilty of a host of sexual crimes.
Speaking directly to the committee Democrats, he said: “Your coordinated and well-funded effort to destroy me and destroy my family will not drive me out … You may defeat me in the final vote, but you’ll never get me to quit — never.”
Not only has the hearing dealt with allegations Christine Blasey Ford has made, but Kavanaugh alluded as well to claims by two other women that have been directed at him since the committee’s four days of hearings in early September.
“Your coordinated and well-funded effort to destroy me and destroy my family will not drive me out … You may defeat me in the final vote, but you’ll never get me to quit — never.”
A judge for 12 years on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, Kavanaugh told the panel and the nation that he did not assault Christine Blasey Ford at a high school party 36 years ago, as she has claimed — and said he was not even present at the get-together she described.
Three other purported witnesses offered by Ford at the high school party 36 years ago have denied any knowledge of it, he pointed out.
“Think about that fact,” he said. “The day after the allegation appeared, I told this committee that I wanted a hearing as soon as possible — to clear my name. I demanded a hearing for the very next day.”
“In those 10 long days, as was predictable — and as I predicted — my family and I have been totally and permanently destroyed by vicious and false additional accusations,” he said. “The 10-day delay has been harmful to me and my family, to the Supreme Court, and to the country.”
Criticized by some for a wooden performance in a Fox News interview earlier this week, Kavanaugh came out swinging, displaying anger and indignation — not infrequently having to fight back tears. He trained his sight squarely on the judiciary panel’s Democrats.
Kavanaugh called the allegations a “grotesque and coordinated character assassination” against him.
“This had destroyed my family and my good name, a good name built up through decades of very hard work and public service at the highest levels of the American government,” he said.
Kavanaugh choked up, recounting that his 10-year-old daughter recently asked that the family pray for Ford. He testified that he does not doubt the California professor may have suffered an assault. But he said, yet again, that it was not by him.
He said he did not travel in the same social circles as Ford and may have met her but was not friends with her.
Kavanaugh said the performance by Democrats at the hearing was an “embarrassment.”
“But at least it was just a good, old-fashioned attempted ‘Borking,’” he said in a reference to successful efforts to defeat Robert Bork’s nomination to the Supreme Court in 1987. “Those efforts didn’t work … A new tactic was needed. Some of you were lying in wait and had it ready.”
That was a reference to a decision by Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), the committee’s ranking Democrat, to sit on Ford’s allegations until near the end of the confirmation process.
Kavanaugh noted that one senator called support for the nomination even before the allegation “complicit with evil” and that others suggested people would die if he is confirmed.
“Your words have meaning,” he said. “Millions of American listen carefully to you. Given comments like those, is it any surprise that people are willing to do anything, to make any physical threat against my family, to make any violent email against my wife?”
Kavanaugh cited activities documented on calendars — a practice he said he adopted from his father. He said the calendar from summer 1982 showed that he was out of town all but three weekends. During weekdays, he said, he worked cutting grass.
Kavanaugh acknowledged drinking beer in high school but insisted he never drank so much that he blacked out. He said he did “goofy or stupid things” as a teenager.
“For one thing, our yearbook was a disaster,” he said, adding that he cringes looking at some of the things his teenage self included on his yearbook page. He apologized for using a female friend’s name in a way that suggested Georgetown Prep students passed her around for sex. He said that was not the case, and not what he intended.
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Kavanaugh said he never had sexual intercourse or anything close to it in high school or for “many years afterward.”