The Suffolk Journal

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Kavanaugh could fill the position of an unjust America

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Brett Kavanaugh, President Donald Trump’s nominee to replace retired Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy, was a shoo-in when he was nominated on July 9, 2018. The Republican Party has a unilateral government — one in which they control both chambers of the legislature, the executive and the courts, never mind statehouses across the country. Kavanaugh appeared to be a moderate when compared to other potential nominees, and he was a well-known Circuit Court judge in Washington, D.C.

Now, two months and many headlines later, circumstances seem to have made the future of Kavanaugh’s bid for a seat on the Court uncertain. The woman who accused Kavanaugh of sexual assault will testify in front of the United States Senate on Thursday. This past weekend, a second woman came forward to make an accusation against him.

That we have a Supreme Court nominee about to get #MeToo’d says something sinister about our political situation.

The first thing President Trump should have done when Dr. Ford came forward is phoned Mitch McConnell and withdrawn his nomination of Kavanaugh. This would’ve been dually good for the president. He avoids a potential PR crisis — although it’s a little late for that — and chooses a similarly conservative judge to fill the vacancy, one who will definitely garner the necessary 51 votes.

He also saves himself and the judge — if the charges are true, they both have a lot to lose. For President Trump, those losses could come in the form of the midterms. In the case of Judge Kavanaugh, they could come in the form of disbarment or worse.

Instead, Trump has doubled down on Kavanaugh, defending him on Twitter and in the press. Kavanaugh said publicly on September 24 that he has no plans to decline his nomination or withdraw from consideration. Republican Senators have largely remained behind the nominee. For some of them, namely Susan Collins (R-Maine), Jeff Flake (R-Arizona) and Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), the decision has been more difficult. “I am still completing my due diligence,” Collins told CNN.

These Senators, going against the majority of their party who blindly support Kavanaugh, are right in their caution. Kavanaugh may seem like a moderate, namely in his refusal to outright oppose Roe v. Wade. But he is a tried and true turn to the hard right. He was one of the most conservative Circuit Court judges in recent memory. He wrote in one of his opinions, Garza v. Hargan, that “the government has permissible interests in favoring fetal life,” a decision often cited as anti-abortion.

But Kavanaugh’s most dangerous quality is his view on presidential authority. He wrote in a 2009 Minnesota Law Review article that, “Congress might consider a law exempting a president … from criminal prosecution and investigation.” This means he would almost certainly rule in favor of the president if anything pertaining to the Mueller investigation ever made it in front of the Supreme Court. We cannot afford, during an active investigation into criminal wrongdoing by the President’s men, and women, to have a justice who believes the president is above the law.

No one is.

The allegations of sexual assault are the very serious icing on the cake. I believe, from the account of hers that I’ve heard thus far and the accounts of those around her, that Dr. Ford is telling the truth. To lie and then insist on an FBI investigation would be criminally foolish.

Also, what kind of a liar offers to take — and passes — a polygraph?

If Trump truly wished to drain the swamp, he wouldn’t have chosen an insider like Kavanaugh, who served in George W. Bush’s administration. He’d want to root out the cesspool of Washington elites, the entitled men who, when left unchecked, can resort to pathological and downright dangerous behaviors.

People like the president himself. But it’s business as usual in Washington; so expect more Brett Kavanaugh’s in the future, too.

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About the Writer
Nick Viveiros, Staff Writer

Nick Viveiros is a sophomore majoring in Politics, Philosophy & Economics and Journalism. He began writing for the Journal in the fall and looks forward...

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Kavanaugh could fill the position of an unjust America