Brett Kavanaugh was a creepy frat boy and guess what, he still acts that way

Judge Brett Kavanaugh confirmation hearing

In what world is Brett Kavanaugh still considered THE BEST option for the Supreme Court? I’m really asking. I talk a lot of sh-t about the patriarchy and the evils of doughy white misogynists and Deplorable wingnuts, but even *I* think it would be relatively easy for the White House to simply withdraw Kavanaugh’s nomination and start over with someone new, someone who doesn’t have as many glaring issues. Of course whoever Trump nominates is going to be problematic and misogynistic. But is it just me or is the GOP not even bothering to hide how rampantly problematic they are at this point? They’re just straight up telling the country: “we only care about rich white dudes, the rest of you can suck it.” So what’s new with Kavanaugh’s nomination? Take your pick from these stories:

Kavanaugh liked his female law clerks to look like models. He liked his young law clerks to look a certain way, and it was known to the point where other professors would basically “groom” young women to be his law clerks. The Yale Dean of Law is looking into it.

Kavanaugh’s student years at Yale. He belonged to a creepy frat which would steal girls’ underwear and the frat boys would chant some creepy sh-t about consent. He was also part of a club… well, you can read about it here.

Kavanaugh’s friend has a theory! That friend is Ed Whelan and he’s president of the Ethics and Public Policy Center. Whelan has been friends with Kavanaugh since they were kids, and he likely would have known everyone involved in the sexual assault incident when Kavanaugh was a teenager. Whelan decided to spin a theory that Ford wasn’t sexually assaulted by Kavanaugh, but by one of Kavanaugh’s look-alike friends. He was literally mansplaining to Ford that her sexual assault was probably committed by someone else, another classmate of Kavanaugh. There’s some question about whether Kavanaugh was part of forming this conspiracy. Ford actually came out and said that she knew the friend Whelan was throwing under the bus and she wouldn’t confuse the two.

Meanwhile, Christine Blasey Ford was told earlier this week that if she wanted to testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee, then she needed to come on Monday and that was it. Her lawyer has been in communication with the Senate Republicans and they’re now trying to negotiate her testimony for next Thursday, and she still wants the FBI to do an investigation of her claims.

And finally, here’s one added gem: South Carolina Republican congressman Ralph Norman decided to make a “joke.” That joke: “Did y’all hear this latest late-breaking news from the Kavanaugh hearings? Ruth Bader Ginsburg came out that she was groped by Abraham Lincoln.” Har har, it’s funny because sexual assault is hilarious, amirite??

Judge Brett Kavanaugh confirmation hearing

Photos courtesy of Avalon Red and Backgrid.

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95 Responses to “Brett Kavanaugh was a creepy frat boy and guess what, he still acts that way”

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  1. Maya says:

    Well the women gets to decide their future this November.

    Vote blue all the way down or lose your rights to your body, sanity, licence and voting rights in the near future.

  2. Sayrah says:

    That RBG joke? This is seriously the bizarro world.

    • Really? says:

      Kavanaugh is just Trump 2.0, which is why he was nominated in the first place. “Birds of a feather” et al. The fact that the Tiger mom law prof was stupid enough to get involved in all of this is what is more surprising to me.

      • BearcatLawyer says:

        Speaking as a lawyer, I am not surprised at Amy Chua’s “advice.” Women lawyers of a certain age can be just as toxic as men.

      • Rapunzel says:

        Amy Chua is a horrid woman. And awful mother.

      • The Other Katherine says:

        Yes, Amy Chua is the kind of status-obsessed, empathy-free ladder-climber I would expect to be 100% onboard with doing whatever it takes to “win” — i.e., being a powerful big wheel at Yale by virtue of getting as many of her mentees as possible into prestigious clerkships by any means necessary. This does not surprise me AT ALL.

      • holly hobby says:

        There should have been a committee to vet law clerks. Yale did a disservice when they ceded that control to Chua/Rubenfeld. I guess Amy is happy to let her daughter work for good ole Brett because the daughter is currently clerking for him.

      • The Other Katherine says:

        Re: Amy Chua’s daughter — skeevy guys know who they can and can’t afford to be skeevy with. I’m sure Kavanaugh is the proverbial “perfect gentleman” with Chua’s daughter.

      • JayneBirkinB says:

        Amy Chua is so myopic that she can’t even see that her daughter got into Harvard based on legacy and her parents’ pocketbook, and she got her clerkship due to connections to Mommy and Daddy. We need to reincarnate Edith Wharton and F. Scott Fitzgerald to write about the Graspy 2%. Not *quite* as rich as the 1%, they make up for it in their hoarding of power.

        I looked up the current Justices, and wonders of wonders, there are exactly 3 law schools represented: Harvard, Yale and (partial) Columbia. 4 went to private high schools, 2 went to selective public high schools, and 2 went to regular public high schools. 6 graduated from Ivy League universities except for Clarence Thomas (who went to a private Catholic university) and Stephen Breyer (who went to Stanford / Oxford).

        Clearly what the United States needs is another graspy, rapey 2% prep school boy who hires clerks who fit his adolescent wet dream scenarios, for a lifetime appointment. We will be stuck with him for another 40-45 years.

        God Save the USA.

    • ocjulia says:

      Yes. In what world is that “joke” funny? Oh, right. Trump’s world.

    • FhMom says:

      I was in a rage yesterday when I heard that on the news. I”m proud to say my 12 year old son thought it was awful, also.

  3. Natalie S says:

    Looks like the Ethics and Public Policy Center needs a new president. Wtf.

  4. BigGirl says:

    The reason there is no FBI investigating, I’m convinced is probably linked to his behavior with the clerks. I find it odd that he never knew Kozinsky was sending sexually inappropriate material to his clerk staff. This is a case of Affluenza and white male privilege. There is more..there is too much resistance to an investigation and Trump and Co is losing control because reporters and everyone else is spilling the beans. I give it 5 more days before Trump dumps him.. Nobody steals Orange Baby 24/7 news cycle.

    • Esmom says:

      I agree and I’ll add that it’s probably more than just (!) that. Another reason why only a fraction of his paper trail has been released. There’s a reason why Kavanaugh isn’t on the original lists of potential nominees and Mitch McConnell even said Kavanaugh would be a problematic nominee. If Mitch admitted that, you know it’s gotta be bad. But I think Kavanaugh made it clear that he would protect Trump so all other bets were off.

      And if this renewed scrutiny puts another nail in the coffin of the university greek system, I’ll be very happy. I’ve long maintained that they all — not just Yale’s — are cesspools of the worst behavior known to humanity. In fact I read an actual stat saying that a college boy is more likely to die if he’s a fraternity member than if he is not. I cannot overstate how much I loathe that these organizations continue to perpetuate their abuse and misogyny.

      • Indiana Joanna says:

        The descriptions of the “shenanigans” of this prep school and others are hair-raising. These wealthy kids regularly planned weekend parties with parents who were absent and provided beach homes and knowingly allowed heavy alcohol and drug use, as well as sexual assault. Doug Kennedy of the notorious boys will be boys Kennedy family was a major participant. Kavanaugh’s buddy Mark Judge still follows around teenage girls in bikinis and posts their photos to his Instagram with all his high school and Yale buddies commenting.

        Kavanaugh and his circle are disgusting, bad people to this day.

      • The Other Katherine says:

        Republicans should always listen to Cocaine Mitch (lol). He’s evil, but he knows what he’s doing.

        Yes, fraternities are almost all cesspools of misogyny. Even in the late ’80s I knew to steer clear of them and the jocks in the high-profile sports — not because I thought avoiding sexual assault was MY responsibility, but because it was obvious that most of them subscribed to disgusting ideas and behavior, and were patently unsafe to be around.

      • Esmom says:

        Indiana Joanna, Yes, their exploits sound horrific, I cannot imagine having crossed paths with that crowd. My public school male friends back in the 80s liked to party a bit, to be sure, but they were gentlemen then and allies now.

        The Other Katherine, I have two sons. One is in college and has no interest in the greek system. A couple of his friends are always inviting him to their fraternity parties but he always declines. Thank goodness he’s found a social outlet elsewhere. My other son will be heading to college next year and while I haven’t forbidden him to join a fraternity I have strongly discouraged it. I think he has enough other interests that he will also find his place without the greek system, which truly scares the crap out of me.

      • Stumpycorgi says:

        @Esmom I started college in the south, at a respectable university. 1/3 of the students were in the Greek system. They are all sworn to secrecy about their hazing rituals, but some things came to light because they were unbelievably disgusting and OMGWTF. One frat was caught putting rohypnol in girls’ drinks. Bad enough right? Nope. Another frat scattedered cotton balls on their front lawn and hired local black children to pick them up as entertainment at a party. They renovated the student center and found a ton of dog skeletons underneath it, seeming to go back for decades. Turns out another frat had their pledges raise puppies and after a few months, had the boys kill their dogs to prove their allegiance. A friend told me many years later that as part of his initiation, he and a couple other boys were kidnapped, blindfolded, beaten, thrown in the back of a van, driven around for hours, eventually led down to a basement, beaten some more, forced to strip naked and get on all fours (still blindfolded), and then BRANDED on the ass with the frat’s symbol. I’ve seen the brand. And this is just the little bit I’m aware of. Of course #notallfrats or whatever, but holy hell, this has to stop. Many of these boys are “Legacies” whose parents contribute heavily to the school, so those roots run deep and there’s a lot of pressure on the boys to stay silent, not anger their parents, and also pressure on the university to turn a blind eye and cover up whatever they can.

      • Tiffany :) says:

        Wow, so much horrifying information in these comments!

        ” Kavanaugh’s buddy Mark Judge still follows around teenage girls in bikinis and posts their photos to his Instagram with all his high school and Yale buddies commenting.”

        WTF!?!?! This enrages me!

        Stumpycorgi, your post is horrifying. The scariest thing is that I believe that all of those things happened. Puppies?!?!! Those people are monsters.

      • Stumpycorgi says:

        @Tiffany :) I know, right? That was just the tip of the iceberg! And get this— I actually met this guy at a university in the Midwest that I transferred to. It was a coincidence that we both ended up there from the same school down south. That university had a chapter of his frat, and he considered joining, but didn’t because he thought they weren’t cool enough (at my transfer university, all frats were on campus and all parties had strict rules, security guards and general oversight, and the the whole school lacked that deep south good ol’ boy mentality). I called him my “friend” earlier to simplify the story, but there was more to it. Eventually he tried to force me to give him a blow job, screaming “you have a tongue ring, use it!” I got away but he threw a huge rock at the back of my car, shattering the back window. It gets worse from there but I doubt anyone will read this and it’s not really relevant so whatever. Just another frat boy assh*le; these stories are a dime a dozen.

      • Tiffany :) says:

        Wow….that’s awful. So many guys walk around thinking they are good and decent people, meanwhile they try to force bjs and become violent and destructive when they are denied. Hugs to you!

      • Erbs says:

        Wow. I’m blown away by these stories.

    • boredblond says:

      Looks like they’ve been running all those ‘I’m just a soccer coach mom and I know he’s such a great guy’ ads as a preemptive strike..they knew what could be coming. Now we’ll hear talking heads complaining that she’s asking for a fair environment..wait..who do these lawmakers work for??? I love seeing the capital halls filled with people reminding them they work for all of us, including Dr. Ford.

      • Christin says:

        Those TV ads caught my attention weeks ago. If he is such a great choice (as the ads claim) with a clean record, why the ads and the huge rush to get him on the bench? Red flags everywhere…

        They are sweating the hours (not just days) right now. His closet is ready to implode, no doubt.

        And I guess he’s on Day 5 or practicing his Q&As with his handler at the WH.

    • cannibell says:

      If Trump does dump him, it will be played this way: Kavanaugh will throw himself on his sword and remove himself from consideration because he’s become “a distraction,” thereby becoming the martyred poster child of Club White Male Privilege.

      A pox on their houses (and Senates).

    • Louisa says:

      Regarding the FBI investigation, I read an interesting theory that the background check the FBI already carried out on BK uncovered a ton of shady, potentially criminal behavior and the WH is covering it up. Hence the 90%+ of docs that have not been released. I can totally believe this.

    • MavenTheFirst says:

      Amazing that the prep school *run by Jesuits* turned a blind eye to depravity and debauchery. By kids. *Jesuits*!

    • holly hobby says:

      Of course if anyone who works in chambers would know! Judges pal around with their law clerks. Kozinski was notorious for playing inappropriate material in chambers. Bret knew and went along with it.

  5. bleu_moon says:

    Ralph Norman is the festering d*ckhole hole who whipped out his handgun and set it on the table while talking to a group of moms advocating for gun control. He claimed he was just trying to “educate” them about guns. The moms felt it was meant as intimidation. Norman likely would have lost his last race, but it was revealed shortly before the election that the Democratic candidate had failed to disclose a history of domestic violence during his first marriage.

  6. Laura says:

    Women we can halt this.If you are in a Florida ,Please Please,Please vote for Gillum and Nelson

  7. Aang says:

    I drive by an all boys prep school on a regular basis. White skin, khaki pants, tie, topsiders, identical young republican hair cut, privilege worn like armor. No anxiety because they know they will be a legacy at a good school and no matter how they perform they will join the family law firm/investment firm/medical practice. They all do look the same. But to suggest that she doesn’t know who tried to rape her? Just no.

    • Esmom says:

      Yeah, I got lost in that “mistaken identity” rabbit hole yesterday and holy hell was it gross. The guy even had floor plans to boost his theory.

      • Jan90067 says:

        A dear friend, whom I love,admire and respect tried to pull this sh!t on me today, send both pics and asking…. I shot him down in a New York minute and properly chastised him with all the whys and wherefores of his errrors. He apologised profusely (I think I may’ve made him cry! Lol).

        But sometimes, you have to educate one at a time.

    • The Other Katherine says:

      The fact that prominent Republicans are going with the “all white guys look alike” defense, in spite of Kavanaugh’s categorical denial, pretty much screams consciousness of guilt. They know he’s shady AF.

    • holly hobby says:

      There’s news on Twitter insinuating that it was Kava Naw that was spearheading the mistaken identity theory. He passed it to Hatch and they ran with it. People on Twitter were actually putting up screen shots of that Whelan dude and one of Hatch’s lackeys’ talking about this game plan before it was widely released.

      If Kava Naw was involved in this smear job that’s a big no and he should be kicked out for that. FBI do you need permission to look into that?

  8. RBC says:

    I have to wonder if there are other women who were assaulted or intimidated by this man? This whole process of nominating this guy is so shady. The judge who “retired “suddenly to make room on the bench has a son who is connected to arranging bank loans to 45 for his business. The thousands of documents that are not being released and the assault allegations.
    Something smells…..

  9. Iknow says:

    This story is why I am so against all-boys school. It’s number 1 million why I refused to send my son to one. I am committed in raising a young man who is respectful of women, seeing the girls in his class as his equal, his peers. Most men I know, who’ve gone to boys school, have had difficulty with women as they’ve gotten older. can you imagine being a teenager and not getting the practice of learning how to interact with females? That is why when they finally are around women – once they’re int he real world, they become aggressive or incapable of seeing women as more than objects to lust after. And I’m not saying they all attempt rape or get physical, but it seems to me, they have difficulty identifying with women. They didn’t learn to look at females as their equal, as their contemporaries. I believe all boys schools reinforce whatever misogyny they’ve learn else where. Brett Kavanaugh exudes that plus white privilege. I am not surprised by this at all.

    • OriginalLala says:

      please dont send him to an all boys school. I went to an all girls school with a “brother” school that we were forced to socialise with at dances and events. The guys that attended that school were flat out awful misogynists, all of them. The way they viewed and treated women was terrible and they never faced any consequences. I don’t know what it is about that school, or if its an all-male environment but ugh, it really bred some awful boys.

      • Digital Unicorn says:

        One of my friends dated a guy who went to an all boys school and said it was the worst experience. They were put under a lot of pressure to be the best at everything, being aggressive was encouraged, bullying was rife, as was experimenting with the other boys; they never got any decent sex ed nor anything about communication skills (or soft skills in general). He said they are the worst place to send a child too.

    • Knitter says:

      Perhaps it depends on the school. My ex went to an all-boys Jesuit prep school. The education he got there on sex and relationships was impressive. He learned to be a good partner and he’s a great feminist.

  10. Eric says:

    I want one of my reps, Senator Kamala Harris, to have another crack at Kavanaugh.

    She’s a boss who has already put the fear of God into frat man regarding his knowledge of speaking to a Krasowitz attorney. I know you remember when Harris made AG Sessions squirm like a weasel and barbecued his ass on TV.

    I agree that women are the future in politics and Senator Harris would be a great choice for a Presidential nod.

    Boss Harris 2020

  11. LadyLaw says:

    Listen…I dislike kavanaugh as much as the next person (and think that what he did in hs is disqualifying) but to imply that the women who got these very competitive clerkships had some leg up because of how they look is preposterous and anti-feminist. Also there are judges on the DC Cir that almost never have women clerks at all.

    Additionally, I will never understand why RBG gets some sort of pass for being a woke queen. She has literally only had one AA clerk the entirety of her time on the Supreme Court as compared to “racist” Kavanaugh who very regularly has minority clerks. Btw RBG was asked about this in her confirmation as she only had one AA clerk when she was on the DC Cir. I don’t think it is a coincidence that she had such negative things to say about Colin Kaepernick and was besties with Scalia.

    • Rapunzel says:

      Yes, RBG has also disappointed with her statements on Kavanaugh’s hearing. Saying that it’s too partisan on the Dem side. And that they’re unfairly looking into too many past indiscretions. That was before this letter. I wonder what she would say about it. I’m not sure I’d like her take.

    • Veronica S. says:

      It’s entirely possible for them to be qualified for the job and intentionally groomed and picked for him. And that’s not a reflection of their ability, it’s a reflection on what a pig Kavanaugh is that he thinks of women only in terms of how they appeal to him rather than their capabilities and intellect.

      • The Other Katherine says:

        Exactly. Elie Mystal, who has contributed to the reporting on the clerkship “grooming” issue, has been very careful to state that this has nothing to do with the qualifications or character of women who have clerked for Kavanaugh, and everything to do with toxic law school / clerkship culture and whatever Kavanaugh’s issues may be.

        And I concur in the criticism of Ginsburg. She has been an amazing champion of women’s rights, and I have huge admiration for her towering personal strength and intellect, but she has, at best, a huge blind spot about her own relationship to race. And that’s being charitable.

      • Veronica S. says:

        I look at it as just another way men destroy women’s reputations and opportunities. Even if they were qualified and entirely capable for the job, now they have that bullsh*t following them around for the rest of their life.

    • holly hobby says:

      It doesn’t matter if these women were qualified. You know if it was a neck and neck race between a “plain looking woman” and “model woman” with the same pedigree and credentials, good ole Brett is going to choose the latter.

      I once sat in an interview with a magistrate judge. That pig put his hands on the back of his head in a casual pose and looked me up and down. My friend interviewed with him too and she did the same thing to her. Yes there are creepy male judges.

    • Stumpycorgi says:

      @LadyLaw Yes, it is anti-feminist and disgusting to suggest that these women *only* got clerkships with him because of how they looked. Are you a lawyer (your name suggests that you are)? I’m a young-ish new-ish lawyer, and it does not surprise AT ALL that d*ckheads like Kavanaugh only considered accomplished women with the looks that he wanted. There are WAY too many law students and recent graduates for the amount of actual opportunities and jobs out there. The legal community was horribly sexist before 2008, and has been getting worse and worse since. There are so many desperate students and graduates with bigger loans than ever before, and fewer jobs than ever. It is SO easy for people (mostly men) in power to take advantage. I have many, many horror stories about things like this. It usually boils down to: woman follows all proper channels, applies to hundreds of paid and unpaid positions, attends professional event to network like crazy like they tell us to do, talks to hundreds of lawyers, gets nowhere, eventually gets a few men to agree to informational interviews and surprise, all they want to do is f*ck her. Plain and simple— they don’t even feel the need to pretend otherwise. No free advice over coffee, they want you to pay with your body and then MAYBE they will think about throwing you a scrap. Also many of us have loans over $100k, and are working 2 jobs, 1 of those jobs for free, full time, for a male lawyer, for a couple YEARS for the “network” and experience and possible resulting opportunities, and at the end… surprise, he just wants to f*ck you.
      TLDR: These women did not get clerkships *just* because they were his type. They had to be qualified as well. They were as desperate as the rest of us to take any possible opportunity they could get. The (majority) of the legal community is so deeply sexist and anti- feminist.

  12. Indiana Joanna says:

    That Whelan conspiracy by Zillow (as someone said) only added to the unreal creepiness of this nomination. Some on Twitter are suggesting he and Kavanaugh coordinated it with the WH which sounds very plausible as Kavanaugh spent hours there after this allegation came out. Nope, Kavanaugh is a dangerous lunatic behind that blank, dough boy face.

    And Whelan accusing another guy in his high schoo, well I hope he gets sued.

  13. SJhere says:

    WTH is actually happening in America? Christ, Trump is making life into Alice in Wonderland, we’re all down the rabbit hole.

    Mistaken ID? That’s what their idea was? FFS! I just can’t anymore.

    God Love Gov. Jerry Brown, CA “Gov. Moonbeam”, who called out Trump with a statement loudly declaring what a danger this Admin. Is to the future of America. For all the crap Jerry Brown has dealt with in his lifetime of public service, even he is stunned by the un-real reality.

  14. Angela82 says:

    Only the ‘best people’. UGH. We are in a truly pathetic time in America’s history. #Idiocracyisadocumentary

  15. jwoolman says:

    The FBI would quickly be able to provide real info from classmates and would most likely be able to track down who exactly was at that party and where and when. The Senate committee really needs that information and also needs to subpoena the drunken lad who was in the room. Also they need to hear what her classmates were saying at the time.

    It is preposterous that they are refusing to do this investigation, which can’t occur unless Trump orders it. I don’t see why people on the judiciary committee can’t ask the FBI to do this, though. It’s just part of their background check, which doesn’t ordinarily go back further than 18. I wonder if they ran into hints of this, though, or similar behavior. The Republicans could be sitting on more than the records of his time in the Bush White House. Trump wants this guy because he believes Kavanaugh will protect him against Mueller. There are plenty of conservatives who could have been chosen instead who don’t have the astonishing list of problems that Kavanaugh does. But I bet none of the other options think the decisions about Nixon were invalid and that the Prez is too busy to be bothered by subpoenas and i investigations.

    If the bare bones of the incident was known at her school after she escaped from the preppie drunkards, I wonder if someone saw her run into the bathroom and figured it out. She might have confirmed it with someone without going into detail. She must have looked very scared and upset since she thought she might die.

    I really wonder about the background of the Republicans on the committee if they think attempted rape is not important. I think it was Stephan Colbert who said that most boys don’t go through a sexual assault phase… But did they? Why are they trivializing this?

    I hope that she comes with some classmates and insists they be heard also. They can provide background information to put the incident in context.

    • JF says:

      I know that this comment will be wildly unpopular, but here goes….

      I’m a criminal prosecutor and, regardless of your politics, the way this is playing out should be very troubling to everyone. You may not like Dershowitz, but he sure knows the Constitution. As he explained in an interview, “There is nothing more essential to American justice than the opportunity to cross-examine your accuser, to confront your accuser. It is in the Constitution.” I mention this because anyone, whether you like them or not, is innocent until proven guilty. And they have the right to confront their accuser. The public (who do not like Trump) have accepted Ford’s 35 year old allegations as proof that Kavanaugh is guilty- that’s not how our justice system works. Kavanaugh does not have to prove a negative- the burden of proof is not on him. No prosecutor would ever take this case to trial because there is no evidence other than “he said, she said”. That is not enough to convict someone. There is a reason that statute of limitations exist- the FBI or any investigator cannot effectively investigate these 35 year old allegations.

      So, whether you like Trump or not, imagine this- if we accept allegations, such as the ones Ford has made, as proof of a crime- what if your father, husband, brother or son was accused of something like this. And was deemed guilty solely because someone made those allegations. That should concern everyone, regardless of politics.

      • Tiffany :) says:

        He is not on trial for a criminal offense, No one is trying to put him in prison. “Innocent until proven guilty” is the standard for penal offenses.

        What is happening here is that he is being reviewed to see if he has the MORAL and ETHICAL standing to be on the SCOTUS. That is a far different standard, and a criminal conviction isn’t necessary for him to have failed to meet this standard.

        Additionally, we aren’t just accepting these allegations “solely because someone made those allegations”. We have other pieces of information (her therapists notes from 2012, her classmates who say this was a known story when it happened, etc) which support her version of events. It will be important to hear from both parties and others during the Senate hearings.

      • Knitter says:

        @JF, Is it really true that you are a criminal prosecutor? You don’t sound like one. It is certainly entirely appropriate to call for an investigation of a matter as serious as this before a nominee is appointed to the Supreme Court.

        What’s at stake for Kavanaugh is neither his liberty nor his livelihood, so the standard of proof is not as strict as it would be in a criminal investigation. What we’re talking about here is whether we have the confidence that Kavanaugh has the moral and ethical standing to deserve the privilege of a lifetime appointment as one of the most powerful people in the U.S.

        And it is certainly not too late to conduct an investigation of the accusation against Kavanaugh. In the past couple of decades, experts have developed best practices to conduct trauma-informed investigations that are sensitive to the survivor, fair, and thorough, even after this much time has passed.

        And here’s where I will say something that may be wildly unpopular… Personally, I wouldn’t automatically disqualify a nominee for the Supreme Court even if such allegations were true. After committing a sexual assault, some people would have taken a thorough, hard look at themselves, taken ownership of their behavior, and decided to become better people–to live differently going forward and to hold themselves to a higher standard of character and behavior. They would take responsibility for their heinous behavior and tell us what they learned from it and how they now strive every day to do better.

      • JF says:

        Tiffany- I know this isn’t a criminal trial, but someone is still innocent until proven guilty- the allegations made by Ford are 35+ years old- how in the world can anyone defend themselves against allegations from that long ago? And if this is a question about whether he is morally fit to be a SCOTUS, again, he is innocent until proven guilty- he deserves, just as anybody deserves, the right to confront his accuser-Ford. You mention a different standard to judge his moral and ethical qualifications- what is that standard? The only evidence we have is Ford’s accusation (which is vague as to many details), her therapist’s notes from 2012 (almost 30 years after the alleged incident), denials by Kavenaugh and others that Ford alleges were present. Additionally, we have the question of ulterior motive- Ford is a registered Democrat, did take steps to prepare for releasing her statements (took a polygraph- inadmissible in court, scrubbed her social media)- these actions raise questions relating to her motivations. There is no way to know what happened 35 years ago and I’m saddened that the public is willing to take these allegations as proof that Kavenaugh did what Ford alleges.

      • Tiffany :) says:

        “we have the question of ulterior motive- Ford is a registered Democrat,”

        Oh, now I see where you are coming from. Riiiiight…she knew back in 2012 that this guy was going to be nominated to the Supreme Court years later so she set her trap early. She told friends for decades that she had fears of being trapped in rooms because of previous trauma, because she is that wily. (/s) Ford’s accusations have not been vague in the slightest. She’s provided exact details about what happened that night, and how it has impacted her life since.

        “There is no way to know what happened 35 years ago”

        No, there is a way to find out more about what happened: conduct an FBI investigation. It is standard procedure. The FBI conducted an investigation into Anita Hill’s claims. Why is the GOP/Administration blocking an investigation here?

      • JayneBirkinB says:

        JF – we’re not accepting the allegations as truth, we want the FBI to do the investigation. This is the standard that all other SCOTUS nominees received – the FBI investigated, and then the Senate heard the results, and formulated their votes thereafter. That’s what we’re asking for, rather than carte blanche belief in the accuser.

        But I have to say that clouds on applicants’ documents and history disqualify them all the time for jobs in the public and private sector, whether they are proven beyond a reasonable doubt in a jury trial or not.

        This is a lifetime post, for SCOTUS to maintain its position as the prestigious co-equal 1/3 part of government, it must adhere to the highest standard of behavior. This is opposite of creating a shadow of a doubt that will get a 5-time offender off on his latest shop lifting charge.

      • Betsy says:

        IAMAL, but Dershowitz has lost his damn mind in the last few years. I wouldn’t trust anything he says.

      • Helen says:

        True. This incident is the court of public opinion at its worst and evidence that the Constitution has an important place to restrain the worst instincts in humanity.

        I would add the FBI has said they only do background checks from age eighteen on and this incident needed to be investigated by the local police but the statute of limitations has long past.

      • jwoolman says:

        JF — it is common for sexual abuse victims to stay silent for many years or decades. That doesn’t prevent investigations of the accusations and doesn’t prevent convictions of predators.

        It is also very common for sexual assault and trauma victims in general to have vivid memories of the details of the trauma itself but to be very hazy on other details such as when exactly it happened, where (if not a familiar place), who else was in the vicinity etc. I’ve experienced this reaction to traumatic events myself. That’s just how our memories work. The trauma keeps the important details vivid and alive in the brain, because it affects the person in later life. The world changes when even lesser traumas happen to you. She was afraid she would not only be raped but that she would accidentally die because of how he was acting. She was not raped only because she had an opportunity to escape and took it.

        This is why the FBI would be so useful if they interviewed appropriate people to see what kind of corroborating testimony is available for both stories. If Kavanaugh is innocent, he should also be asking for an FBI investigation to clear his name.

        I have never known someone who is telling the truth to call for an FBI investigation herself, as Ford has. She also wants the Senators to hear other witnesses, especially the friend of Kavanaugh’s who was also in the room. These are very reasonable requests.

        Kavanaugh has categorically denied he was ever there (even though she did. It. And the place) and says he never ever did anything like that. If others have different memories of him or saw anything that matches Ford’s story— he’s in trouble. Perjury is a serious matter for lawyers and judges and is disqualifying.

        Helen – actually, there is no statute of limitations in Maryland for such an assault. If she decides to make charges against him with the police, she can.

    • Christy says:

      “I’m saddened that the public is willing to take these allegations as proof that Kavenaugh did what Ford alleges.”

      And I’m sickened that the GOP refuses to conduct an FBI investigation into whether the allegations, made by a woman who is going through a living hell for coming forward can, in fact, be substantiated by other credible individuals. This man will be in a position to decide on issues that will directly impact millions of women’s rights and lives and I damn well want to know whether he views women as people or objects.

  16. homeslice says:

    Why is this info not being put out in the mainstream?? I just cannot anymore. Every day is worse than the one before…
    On CNN last night they aired an interview with Republican women either calling Ford a flat out liar or that if it did happen it wasn’t a big deal, he was a just a kid. I wanted to punch a hole through my TV…

  17. tuille says:

    Kavanaugh is a lying pig but even if you don’t believe Ford, please remember that Kav recently (pre-Ford) that in his opinion, a Pres should automatically be exempted from any possible criminal charges for anything, ever.
    That single statement, reported in NYT, is enough for me to fear his effect on the SC.
    Please, call or email your senators demanding they not confirm this creep. I’m lucky to be in CA (DiFi & Harris) so I don’t have to say “If you vote to confirm Kav, you will not have my vote again, ever.” Those from AZ & AL particularly need to bombard Flake & Murkowski. Flake’s announced he’s leaving so he should have nothing to lose by nixing Kav.

  18. Insomniac says:

    I watched that Whelan crap going down on Twitter last night. It was like watching Wile E. Coyote fall off a cliff over and over. If actual people’s lives weren’t being destroyed by this crap, it would have been hilarious.

    The punchline? The guy Whelan accused was one of the people who signed a “Brett Kavanaugh is such a great guy” letter. Hope those bus tire tracks on his back don’t hurt too much.

  19. holly hobby says:

    The Yale story is so disturbing because Chua/Rubenfeld are essentially acting like partial pimps to good ole Brett. I have had a low opinion on Chua since she wrote that Tiger Mom book but this takes the cake. Ladies, being smart, hard working and a high GPA doesn’t matter. Good Ole Brett is only concerned with “runway” law clerks.

    There’s more information re Yale investigation on Chua/Rubefeld here: https://abovethelaw.com/2018/09/details-on-the-allegations-against-and-yale-law-school-investigation-into-professor-jed-rubenfeld/?rf=1

    Very sketchy and I do hope she gets disciplined and he gets fired. Who gave these two morons the power to make and break a law career? Shouldn’t this be done by a panel?

  20. silo says:

    Isn’t every frat boy creepy anyway, no matter how many years have passed??!!

  21. Ally says:

    I was astonished that Amy Chua (re: your first link) was a recent guest on Chris Hayes’ otherwise reliably excellent podcast. I thought everyone — let alone smart, progressive people like Chris Hayes — knew she was a noted moron, advocating psychological abuse as excellent parenting.

    Now we know she extends that to procuring attractive women for men like Kavanaugh, even her own daughter. Tiger mothering!

    After penning a pro-Kavanaugh editorial (titled “Kavanaugh is a Mentor to Women”, if you can imagine) even knowing what he was like or perhaps precisely because she knew what he was like and was providing cover, she is now pretending to be sick in hospital until this PR nightmare of her own creation blows over. Let’s not let it.

    • JayneBirkinB says:

      I recall the hundreds upon hundreds of people who made comments on the WSJ and NYT articles about her Tiger Mother book. So many people have been hurt by this type of parenting. Most need long term therapy, few have strong adult relationships with their parents. It causes a lot of estrangement. People move to the opposite side of the country so they won’t have Tiger Grandparents ruining their own kids’ lives.

      In the book, Amy Chua does relent (slightly) in her Chinese mothering style. But I think that her kids are still too young to know for certain if they will turn out ok. Not that I’m hoping for them to get crushed, but I do question their ability to successfully interact with kids who didn’t grow up that way.

      I knew someone from a similar background who was subjected to this parenting style – he had a nervous breakdown in grad school. He disappeared for a couple of years, the family hired a private investigator who eventually found him working for minimal pay at a manufacturing plant. The PI contacted me for any way to reach him, because his dad was dying. I tried, but he still didn’t want anything to do with them.

      Amy Chua has nothing to say about the kids who get crushed in this system, she only writes about the few ones who do what the parents want and “win” the prize clerkships, diplomas from the Ivys, etc. I also question her scholarship for this book and her follow up “Triple Package”.

      • A says:

        @JayneBirkinB, my parents were never “as bad” as Amy Chua. But I got a good load of it from them in terms of strictness and expectations. It’s taken me a while, almost a year after graduating from undergrad, to realize that my current funk and depression is somewhat of a nervous breakdown response, brought down after having a lot of expectations placed on me as a student who is just tired of everything now. It’s been an extended break down all through undergrad where I just couldn’t bring up my ability to care for anything, and it’s still on going.

        It’s sh*tty. It’s going to take years to walk back so much of what I’ve absorbed from that upbringing. I love love LOVE my parents, and to their absolute credit, they have thought about it and been introspective and realized how they’ve failed in a lot of ways. It’s sad because they haven’t changed, but the realization itself is more than enough for me. I will get better. And if I ever have children, I will do better. But I just wish I didn’t have to do it at all.

  22. Spike says:

    Ha ha – Whalen had to apologize for & walk back his “theory”. Moron says -

    I made an appalling and inexcusable mistake of judgment in posting the tweet thread in a way that identified Kavanaugh’s Georgetown Prep classmate. I take full responsibility for that mistake, and I deeply apologize for it. I realize that does not undo the mistake.
    https://www.vox.com/2018/9/20/17885050/ed-whelan-kavanaugh-christine-blasey-ford-accusation

    Plus the organization he heads “Ethos and Public Policy Center” is neocon, anti gay marriage, conservative dookie
    https://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php/Ethics_and_Public_Policy_Center

    https://www.activistfacts.com/organizations/499-ethics-and-public-policy-center/

    https://rightweb.irc-online.org/profile/ethics_and_public_policy_center/

  23. A says:

    One of the most damning anecdotes, for me, was from a classmate or a former classmate or former alumnus (can’t remember exactly which) of Georgetown Prep, who I believe was assaulted by a priest when he was a student, along with about a dozen other young men at the school. When the allegations came out against that priest, Mark Judge, the man who was Brett Kavanaugh’s friend who helped with the assault, wrote a whole screed about how that priest only abused students at Georgetown Prep because “he was corrupted by liberal values into homosexuality” and that the person who brought the allegations forward was someone who “deserved it” because “he was a homo.”

    So yeah. I believe Dr. Christine Blasey Ford.