Kavanaugh/Ford Hearing Livestream And Open Thread

For better or worse, and likely for worse, the latest round of the Brett Kavanaugh hearings is moving forward.

In addition to watching the hearings regarding the charges against Judge Brett Kavanaugh by Dr. Christine Blasey Ford via the usual channels, you can also watch the hearing at the livestream embedded below:

I’ll likely be commenting over on Twitter regarding the hearings throughout the day. In the meantime, consider this an open thread to discuss the hearings as they proceed. Wrap-up and reaction posts will be forthcoming at the end of the day and early tomorrow morning.

Additionally, both James Joyner and I have preview posts up this morning regarding the status of the hearings and where we ought to go instead.

Update (9/28/2017): I have posted my summary of yesterday’s hearing and the impressions it left me with, as has James Joyner.

FILED UNDER: Congress, Law and the Courts, Quick Takes, Supreme Court, US Politics, ,
Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug holds a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010. Before joining OTB, he wrote at Below The BeltwayThe Liberty Papers, and United Liberty Follow Doug on Twitter | Facebook

Comments

  1. Neil Hudelson says:

    While millions of eyes were watching, Di Fi put together all of the insane and inane comments from GOP leadership–we’re gonna listen to the lady but get this done, we’re gonna ram this through, etc. This is a soundbite game and Graham, McConnel, etc., made a dozen unforced errors.

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  2. Daryl and his brother Darryl says:

    Painful to listen to.
    This woman is a fvcking patriot. She is doing what is right for the country in spite of the potential of great damage to herself and her loved ones.
    Every single Republican on this panel is a traitor; willing to weaken the institutions of this country for their own partisan gain.

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  3. MarkedMan says:

    The questioning format is very chaotic. Grassley is hardly covering himself in glory with this.

  4. MarkedMan says:

    It’s depressing to realize Fox News viewers who aren’t watching live will only get “summations” with all the damaging parts cut out.

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  5. Michael Reynolds says:

    Oh, this is not going well for the Republicans.

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  6. charon says:

    @MarkedMan:

    Grassley is hardly covering himself in glory with this.

    He is fronting for McConnell. McConnell is a micromanager who controls his committee chairmen, Grassley is basically just McConnell’s sockpuppet.

  7. MarkedMan says:

    According to Josh Marshall, Republican Twitter feeds are lit up with contempt and hatred towards Ford.

  8. Kathy says:

    @Michael Reynolds:

    Does it matter?

    There was a class in junior high school where the teacher recorded weekly grades based on homework, plus the grade for the monthly test. She had each student sit at her desk so they could look at their grades, and watch her add up and average them. One time I had all A’s, plus a B+ on the test. My grade that month? C-. Why? Because she didn’t like me. She had all the power and could do as she damned well pleased.

    The GOP will do what their Senate votes allow them to do.

    The only chance to derail Kavanaugh at this point, is if enough GOP Senators vote against him, and no red state Democrats vote for him.

    The rational thing to do, pressure Kavanaugh and El Cheeto to withdraw the nomination, or at least take the time to investigate the matter properly, won’t happen (if it does, I’ll gladly eat my words).

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  9. Andre Kenji de Sousa says:

    Murkowski and Collins are going to be committing political suicide if they vote for Kavanaugh. I don’t think that McConnell have the votes. Cory Gardner seems to be committed to being a one term senator, but even so.

  10. steve says:

    “According to Josh Marshall, Republican Twitter feeds are lit up with contempt and hatred towards Ford.”

    They have been calling her and the other 2 sluts and whores for a while now. It covers Kavanaugh two ways. He didn’t do it, but if he did they deserved it.

    Steve

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  11. MarkedMan says:

    @steve: Trump Jr. has been mocking Ford on Twitter. So the Republicans have that going for them….

  12. HarvardLaw92 says:

    Two observations:

    Selecting this woman as their stand-in was a horrifically bad idea. She’s conducting a deposition, and that’s predictably playing as boring on television with no summation – ever – to pull the extracted information together into a coherent picture.

    Dr. Ford is conducting herself perfectly. She’s coming across as believable and sincere.

    Grassley really dropped the ball with this one. I suspect it won’t make any difference. Kavenaugh could rape a woman right there on live TV and they’d vote to confirm him. They want their seat.

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  13. mattbernius says:

    To @Kathy & @HarvardLaw92‘s points, taking a step back, what we’re going see is a test of McConnell’s ability to push forward with minimal defections. So long as he has 50 votes he’s moving forward regardless of what happens today.

    I suspect that he believes the chances of losing the Senate are still low enough to plow this through. He may even feel that it would be worth losing the Senate to score this “win.”

  14. MarkedMan says:

    I read a column by Ross Douthat this morning that I think was quite insightful. For those who don’t know him, Douthat is one of the Conservative NYT columnists. His column addressed both sides of the Kavanaugh debate and cautioned everyone that many people very sincerely believed either Ford or Kavanaugh, and equally believed the other side could not possibly be telling the truth when they said they believed such a liar and were therefore motivated by pure political expediency. He cautioned against anyone, anywhere on the political spectrum making such assumptions. I think it is good advice, but I think it is playing out here in a way Douthat probably wouldn’t have predicted.

    If the Republicans were simply interested in railroading Ford they have badly, badly mishandled their play. Maybe they were sincerely interested in getting to the truth? No, that’s nonsense because of the rush to judgement, the calling off of the FBI and so forth. They viewed this as their big chance to discredit her. So how did they screw up so badly? I suspect it is that by living in the Fox News bubble they have lost the ability to see that people they see as their opponents might be sincere. So they see a woman like Ford and talk amongst themselves and come to the conclusion that she is a scheming liar. So they feel confident that if they put up a good solid Republican woman prosecutor she will quickly tear holes in her story. They weren’t prepared for the impact of Ford’s testimony because in the Fox world she was always just a shrieking partisan harpy.

    Over the past several years I can think of a number of these own goals caused by Republicans applying the mentality of the Fox bubble to the real world.

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  15. Michael Reynolds says:

    What I am seeing increasingly is that it’s Lindsey Graham who seems most enraged, most paranoid about a #MeToo moment. I wonder why.

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  16. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @mattbernius: Or that not getting a win on Kavanaugh will be what loses the Senate for the GOP. I think that street may run both ways.

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  17. MarkedMan says:

    @Michael Reynolds: Are you asking because you, like me, are actually curious, or is there some rumor in his background that you are alluding to?

  18. Andre Kenji de Sousa says:

    I suspect that he believes the chances of losing the Senate are still low enough to plow this through. He may even feel that it would be worth losing the Senate to score this “win.”

    McConnell problem is that GOP donors want Kavanaugh and don’t want to cave to pressure. But Murkowski, Collins and Gardner would be committing political suicide if they vote for Kavanaugh, and confirming a SC Justice in the lame duck session if they lose the Senate would be terrible optics.

    They painted themselves in the corner.

  19. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Michael Reynolds: Because he’s honestly embarrassed that he was part of the “bitchez be lyin'” movement? No? How bout because he be gettin’ owned by a lyin bitch, then? Maybe he see the AG job going up in smoke?

  20. Kathy says:

    @mattbernius:

    I suspect that he believes the chances of losing the Senate are still low enough to plow this through. He may even feel that it would be worth losing the Senate to score this “win.”

    The reasoning, if there is any, is that they’ll keep the Senate.

    Consider Ginsburg is 85 and may die or retire at any time between now and 2020, while Breyer is 80 and the same goes for him. They may both be determined to outlast Trump, but it’s not entirely under their control.

    If the GOP loses the Senate, there’s no way Trump will be able to get any of the people on the Federalist list confirmed, even if it means going into 2021 without a full complement of justices.

    So why stake so much on Kavanaugh, when there’s time to replace him? They may still do so before the election. If they keep the Senate, they can confirm the replacement anyway.

    It just doesn’t make sense, unless the plan is to force Kavanaugh through, even if he has done far worse than he’s been accused of so far.

  21. Michael Reynolds says:

    @MarkedMan:
    No rumor, just a read of his character and his statements.

  22. charon says:

    @mattbernius:

    It could go to a vote regardless of the whip count. You can argue a case that it would be better to lose now than have it drag on. Plus, if they do not have the votes now, they will not be there later, either.

    Murkowski is probably a pretty solid no because Kavanaugh has a bad track record on native Americans, a large constituency in Alaska. All the other GOP look like long shots to me though.

  23. MarkedMan says:

    @Michael Reynolds: Graham is a fascinating characer in a lot of ways. I imagine ol’ Willy Shakespeare would be able to work wonders with him. Such an odd collection of details. He pivoted on a dime from being one of Trump’s most aggressive pests to having his lips permanently bonded to Trumps pale white ass. His parents died when he was 22 and he pretty much raised his 13 year old sister single handedly. He has one of the quickest wits in the Senate.

  24. Daryl and his brother Darryl says:

    @Michael Reynolds:

    it’s Lindsey Graham who seems most enraged

    Dennison and Putin have proof that Butters is gay and are holding it over him. They can do that because Butters doesn’t know that everyone already knows.
    It’s like Dennisons comb-over; everyone knows its a stupid way to cover a bald head…except Dennison, who thinks he is fooling everyone.

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  25. Michael Reynolds says:

    @MarkedMan: @Daryl and his brother Darryl:
    I have long assumed that Graham was in the closet. While McCain lived he could occasionally be rallied to moments of courage. But when McCain died, so did that Lindsey Graham. Now he sure reads like a guy in desperate fear of being outed, either as gay (because apparently he doesn’t know it’s 2018) or because of some actual offense.

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  26. dazedandconfused says:

    @Daryl and his brother Darryl:

    I suspect Senator Butters was shown the instruments of RW blogosphere torture and fell back in line faster than you could say “Oh deary me!”

    What it will take to block The Kav is at least two R Senators who are willing to “die well”, as Mel Gibson might put it. Not only would their political careers be ended but all the wonderful rewards of their apres-political careers in Gucci Gulch. There isn’t enough time to fluff up another nominee and thrust him through the process before November, and if Mitch thought it likely he would still be in the majority he wouldn’t be ramming, cramming, and slamming The Kav down our throats.

    Two R’s who are willing to sacrifice everything to stop The Kav? Lotsa luck with that.

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  27. MarkedMan says:

    @charon:

    All the other GOP look like long shots to me though.

    You may well be right. But I can guarantee you every single GOP candidate is pissed as hell at McConnell and the President for taking what should have been a winning vote with their constituency and turning it into a “take one for the team” vote that will motivate their opposition.

  28. MarkedMan says:

    @Michael Reynolds: You know, even in 2018 I have some sympathy for not wanting to be outed. I’m as straight and boring as they come, but I would be excruciatingly embarrassed to have a bunch of strangers start discussing my sex life. Not to mention any significant others, past or present, who would get dragged into it just because they were involved with me.

  29. Michael Reynolds says:

    @MarkedMan:
    I have sympathy right up to the point that you actively oppress your own. Graham has never been a rabid homophobe as far as I know, but he is a Republican, and he is now actively aiding and abetting a (former, we hope) sex offender and degrade an American citizen doing her patriotic duty. That squelches my generous instincts. He doesn’t have to be the piggiest of the pigs.

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  30. charon says:

    @MarkedMan:

    Individually, they may be all long shots. But if there are 6 or 8 possibles – Capito for example – the chances of hitting one – all that is needed is one – not that shabby.

  31. Paul L. says:

    @Daryl and his brother Darryl:
    Dr. Christine Blasey Ford’s voice sounds just like Dr. Melissa Click’s.

    “You need to get out. Who wants to help me get this reporter out of here? I need some muscle over here.”

    Hopefully Christine Blasey Ford will use her new found national platform to lobby for other victims of rape like the credibly accused Duke Lacrosse/UVA Frat gang rapists who have been protected by toxic, bad, insulting and hurtful narrative advanced by Rape Culture lead by GOP misogynist rape apologists.

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  32. Daryl and his brother Darryl says:

    @Paul L.:
    Dude…you keep going back to one instance.
    Women who come forward claiming sexual assault are found to be truthful at a rate of something like 98%.
    Go comment on a site full of other misogynists.
    You’re out of your league here.

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  33. Neil Hudelson says:

    I love how the righties who want to show that all dem bitchez be lyin’ can come up with one–and only one–example from nearly a decade and a half ago.

    They can’t point to anything before, nothing after. That’s all they’ve got, and they think it’s actually persuasive.

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  34. Daryl and his brother Darryl says:

    Kavanaugh now sounding very much like a predator.
    Angry. Strident. Petulant.

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  35. Daryl and his brother Darryl says:

    @Daryl and his brother Darryl:

    Angry. Strident. Petulant.

    The tears of white male privilege.

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  36. MarkedMan says:

    @Daryl and his brother Darryl: I’m only catching it in bits and pieces but if he wants to assure people he had too much self control to act out as charged, he’s doing a bad job. Some Fox News woman commentator (Laura Ingraham) encourage him to let his anger show. Proof again that you should never try to apply Fox News rules outside the bubble.

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  37. MarkedMan says:

    Whoa, I had missed the part where he implied that Blasey Ford came forward as part of a revenge scheme on behalf of the Clintons. Never mind the Fox News bubble. This is Alex Jones territory. Pizzagate comes next

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  38. Paul L. says:

    @Daryl and his brother Darryl:
    2% are proven false. Those who were not found not guilt of rape or not tried due to lack of evidence (Dr. Christine Blasey Ford) are still considered in the credible accused 98%..

    The Duke Lacrosse and UVA cases do not fall under the (2% are proven to be false) accusations.
    The cases are just considered a toxic, bad, insulting and hurtful narrative because the prosecutor (Nifong) and the journalist (Erdely) made some minor mistakes that the rape apologists pounced on to dismiss them.
    Dr. Christine Blasey Ford’s Dr. Melissa Click sounding voice can change that.

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  39. MarkedMan says:

    @Paul L.: You are not making any sense. Melissa Click’s voice coming out of Blasey Ford? What does that even mean?

  40. Daryl and his brother Darryl says:

    @Paul L.:

    not tried due to lack of evidence (Dr. Christine Blasey Ford)

    So, for the millionth time, let’s get the FBI to investigate and look for evidence.
    Oh…wait…your team is afraid of that.
    Never mind.
    Cowards.

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  41. HarvardLaw92 says:

    Yea, Kanavaugh’s performance here is absolutely terrible. He’s managing to project slimy and unlikable in one fell swoop.

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  42. Daryl and his brother Darryl says:

    So today has been a complete waste of time. Kabuki Theater.
    The senate will hold their vote tomorrow and this steaming piece of shit will be on the SC.
    My sympathies go out to the women and minorities who he will rape, metaphorically, in the next 3-4 decades.

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  43. becca says:

    Is Kavanaugh florid from anger or drink? He really comes across as a self-pitying drunk.

    Yuck.

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  44. Paul L. says:

    @MarkedMan:
    Dr. Christine Blasey Ford’s voice sounds exactly just like Dr. Melissa Click’s.

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  45. the Q says:

    Rachel Mitchell, not exactly Ferdinand Pecora here.

  46. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @Daryl and his brother Darryl:

    The takeaway will be that they rammed a vote through with three more accusers who never got a chance to testify because the Republicans don’t give a shit about women. They just care about winning.

    They handled this wrongly in every way it was possible to do so. They may have even invented some new ones. The own goals are just astounding here.

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  47. MarkedMan says:

    @Paul L.: Are you implying she’s the same person?

  48. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @Paul L.:

    Try to understand this:

    None of us remotely care about this threadbare analogy you’re trying (and failing) to sell.

    Today was 100% about how they looked on TV. Kavanaugh blew it and the GOP members of the committee blew it. Complete, unmitigated disaster for Republicans today.

    And they have no one to blame for it but themselves.

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  49. Kathy says:

    @Daryl and his brother Darryl:

    So today has been a complete waste of time.

    Maybe not.

    Maryland has no statute of limitations on attempted rape, though if it did in 1982 that might shoot down what I’m about to say. Maryland authorities could investigate the incident, and if warranted could indict Kavanaugh and try him.

    Partisanship is such that the GOP would insist he stay in the court even if he winds up with some jail term. But maybe not.

    On more realistic possibilities, the hearing today may provide cover for Collins, Murkowski, Corker and Flake to vote down Kavanaugh. It does provide cover for all red state Democrats. So there is a slim chance he won’t be confirmed.

  50. Paul L. says:

    @Daryl and his brother Darryl:
    Yes, let the FBI investigate and look for evidence for all of these credibly accused rapists Kanavaugh, Duke Lacrosse and UVA Phi Kappa Psi Fraternity .

    A FBI Rape task force created by the Dr. Christine Blasey Ford I Believe All Women Act that will pass when the Democrats control Congress after the Blue Wave overriding Trump’s veto with their 2/3 majority.

    Marked
    No they are not the same person,
    Just that Dr. Christine Blasey Ford, Dr. Melissa Click and Sen. Elizabeth Warren all sound alike.
    Must be a shrill progressive academic thing.

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  51. MarkedMan says:

    Kavanaugh is certainly not coming across in a manner befitting a Supreme Court justice. Lindsay Graham on the other hand gave a real stem winder to support him. Curse his little black heart, he saw the fiasco that was continuing with having the female prosecutor take his deposition and took his own time back and put on a show worthier of Jimmy Stewart at his finest.

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  52. Daryl and his brother Darryl says:

    @Kathy:

    the hearing today may provide cover for Collins, Murkowski, Corker and Flake to vote down Kavanaugh.

    It has certainly given them the cover they would need, but they will just fall in line like they always do. Not one of those four have the spine they were born with. Not one of those four is a patriot. Had they been alive during the Revolution we would have called them loyalists.

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  53. grumpy realist says:

    @becca: I was wondering about that as well. What are the chances that Kavanaugh turns out to be an alcoholic?

  54. Daryl and his brother Darryl says:

    @Paul L.:
    Dude…you just keep going back to the same thing. That’s all you got as an excuse to put a credible accused rapist on the SC?
    Look…forget the rape.
    His testimony this afternoon shows that he is a vengeful, hyper-partisan activist.
    That alone proves he is unfit for the bench.
    But go ahead…type something else about the Duke rape case in response.
    You are dumb.

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  55. Kathy says:

    @HarvardLaw92:

    Today was 100% about how they looked on TV. Kavanaugh blew it and the GOP members of the committee blew it. Complete, unmitigated disaster for Republicans today.

    It pains me to say this: maybe not.

    In essence, Donald J. Kavanaugh pulled a Trump (he’s been doing it from the start). And we know how El Cheeto plays with his base. Now they’ll fall in love with the white Cheeto.

    There may be a slim chance he’ll be voted down, but I wouldn’t bet on it. There’s a better chance for more accusations against him between now and the time the full Senate votes, and it’s impossible to say how they’ll play out.

    It’s the 2016 election all over again. He shouldn’t be confirmed, by all rational measures he should withdraw, but there he is.

  56. Paul L. says:

    @Daryl and his brother Darryl:

    His testimony this afternoon shows that he is a vengeful, hyper-partisan activist.
    That alone proves he is unfit for the bench.

    Too late for that
    See Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Sonia “Wise Latina” Sotomayor
    14th Amendment does not apply to white people.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Schuette_v._Coalition_to_Defend_Affirmative_Action

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  57. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @Kathy:

    Those votes are locked up anyway. Today gains the GOP nobody they didn’t already have, but stands to lose them more moderate voters and it’ll be disastrous for their already substantial women problem. Today couldn’t have gone any better for Dems if they’d been running the thing.

  58. Michael Reynolds says:

    @Kathy:
    Yep. I think you’re right. The right wing will rally.

    The question is whether the few remaining Republicans with a shred of decency left will be brave or cowardly. Guess which one is more likely.

  59. Teve says:

    Now they’ll fall in love with the white Cheeto.

    El Cheeto Blanco? 😛

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  60. HarvardLaw92 says:

    @Paul L.:

    Lol, now you’re pivoting to whining about how white people have it so bad?

    Christ, man, go home. You’re drunk.

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  61. Michael Reynolds says:

    And Graham is our next attorney general, in which post he will shut down the Mueller investigation as Kavanaugh distorts the Constitution to cover Trump’s ass.

  62. James Pearce says:

    @Daryl and his brother Darryl:

    That’s all you got as an excuse to put a credible accused rapist on the SC?

    What’s the plan if the “credibly accused rapist” gets confirmed for his lifetime appointment on the SC?

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  63. Kathy says:

    @Daryl and his brother Darryl:

    It has certainly given them the cover they would need, but they will just fall in line like they always do. Not one of those four have the spine they were born with.

    That’s possible.

    But it brings up another question: why?

    Murkowski and Collins will eventually face reelection. While the public’s political memory is short, something like voting down the white Cheeto would stick out for years.

    But Corker and Flake are out of the Senate. So either 1) they have further political ambitions, or 2) they approve of Kavanaugh ideologically, to the point they don’t mind he’s a liar and a likely sex criminal. The only upside would be to stick it to Trump, which may not be worth it as far as they’re concerned.

    It’s a sad, sad world.

  64. MarkedMan says:

    @James Pearce: OK, I’ll bite. Next time the Dems have power, do a real investigation, impeach him if it shows he perjured himself during his testimony.

    We have to resign ourselves that we will be taking out Trump’s trash for a generation.

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  65. MarkedMan says:

    @Kathy: Flake has all but said he is going to run against Trump in 2020. Political calculus says that he has to draw off the Republicans who value Trump only for his Supreme Court picks but personally despise him.

  66. SenyorDave says:

    If there is a vote he’ll be confirmed. McCain saved Obamacare because he hated Trump, and probably hated McConnell and some other Republicans in the Senate. It was a surprise to the Turtle. No way he’ll ever get embarrassed like that again, so if they vote its because they know they have the votes.
    It will be fascinating to see the Republican explanations if he is confirmed. They have to know the blowback among women and independents will be pretty bad. It will solidify the base, obviously, but they were pretty solid to start with. If he is confirmed I can’t see how it is anything other than a net negative to the party.
    And if he is confirmed, the Democrats should spend every last cent to include some of the quotes from the GOP in campaign ads.

  67. Electroman says:

    @Kathy: What would the Republicans do to Murkowski? They already primaried her, yet she’s still in office.

  68. MarkedMan says:

    @SenyorDave:

    If he is confirmed I can’t see how it is anything other than a net negative to the party.

    Yep. And they were planning to run on this in November. Now vulnerable Senators will need to run away from it…

  69. george says:

    @MarkedMan:

    That seems to be the most sensible approach if he’s put on the court without an investigation.

    However, because of the politics it’ll have to be a very thorough investigation – but I’d bet it would be fairly straightforward to get some pretty strong evidence above and beyond the accusations already out there, the kind of evidence that’ll convince moderates still on the fence. Nail down which parties the alleged rapes occurred at, and then subpoena people who were at those parties.

  70. Kathy says:

    @MarkedMan:

    The small silver lining in the big, black cloud, is that presidents in the modern era do badly in the general election when challenged within their party when running for reelection. See Ford, Carter and Bush the elder.

  71. MarkedMan says:

    @george: I think the most likely perjury charges will come from his denials about what he knew about the stolen emails and other Clinton and Bush era shenanigans. There is a reason the Republicans withheld virtually all records from that era.

  72. Teve says:

    Jennifer Rubin

    Verified account

    @JRubinBlogger
    42m42 minutes ago
    More
    His level of rudeness to @amyklobuchar and @SenFeinstein is remarkable – the contempt for women challenging him is extremely Trump like

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  73. Michael Reynolds says:

    @Kathy:
    You have good, clear eyesight.

  74. Teve says:

    David Frum

    Verified account

    @davidfrum
    3h3 hours ago
    More
    Kavanaugh’s message – “the Left”; “Borking”; “revenge on behalf of the Clintons”; “goes around comes around” – is that of a man who has already lost his Court seat, preparing for his next career

    1,003 replies 5,734 retweets 20,391 likes
    Reply 1.0K Retweet 5.7K Like 20K Direct message

  75. Kathy says:

    @Michael Reynolds:

    Actually, I should wear glasses but I keep misplacing them.

  76. Teve says:

    Mediaite

    Verified account

    @Mediaite
    Follow Follow @Mediaite
    More
    Fox News Contributor Calls Kavanaugh Accusers ‘Skanks’, Says Christine Ford Should ‘Stop Opening Her Legs’

  77. MarkedMan says:

    @Teve: That’s a joke right?

  78. Kylopod says:

    @Michael Reynolds:

    The question is whether the few remaining Republicans with a shred of decency left will be brave or cowardly.

    Decency has got nothing to do with it. That ship sailed a long time ago.

    The question is one of political calculation: will Collins and Murkowski endanger their own careers for this? I keep hearing people talk like the two will invariably roll over for the GOP agenda, but we’ve seen that isn’t true. McConnell failed at ACA repeal four times despite dedicated efforts because he simply didn’t have the votes, particularly from Murkollins who opposed every version. They did support the tax bill, true, but much of the conventional Beltway wisdom has long been that Republican tax cuts are always a safe bet politically, with very little downside.

  79. Michael Reynolds says:

    @Kylopod:
    I have higher hopes for Flake and Corker than I do for either Collins or Murkowski. But I freely confess that I’m not at all confident of my ability to read this, because I don’t know how women voters will react. The women’s vote, like the youth vote, is Charlie Brown’s football. Maybe this time? I hope this time. But there isn’t a long record to draw upon in sussing this.

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  80. SenyorDave says:

    @MarkedMan: Fox News Fires Contributor Who Called Kavanaugh Accusers ‘Skanks’.
    “Kevin Jackson has been terminated as a contributor,” a network spokesperson told Mediaite. “His comments on today’s hearings were reprehensible and do not reflect the values of FOX News.”
    Jackson, a pro-Trump personality who frequently appeared on Fox News and guest hosted shows like Outnumbered and Fox & Friends, tweeted frenetically about Thursday’s Senate Judiciary Committee hearings. He bashed Christine Blasey Ford and the other women who have accused Kavanaugh of assault in explicit terms, calling them “Lying skanks.”
    In one tweet, he said Ford’s “academic problems came from her PROMISCUITY!”

    Its Fox, anything is possible. BTW, Bill Sine, former Fox VP and harassment enabler helped coach Bret Kavanaugh. That we have to pay Shine’s salary is a travesty, he’s a shitbag who spent years looking the other way while Ailes, O’Reilly and others were doing their things.

  81. Kylopod says:

    @Michael Reynolds: I would not be shocked to see Corker and Flake vote him down (I would not be shocked by any outcome at this point, frankly), but the two by all indications are ideological conservatives who would like to see the Court move to the right. Since they’re retiring they’re less beholden to their party than if they faced reelection sometime in the future, but that goes both ways–they also have less to fear from voters in general, and if anything maintaining some allegiance to party could be more important to them in any post-Senate career.

    (Note also that Murkowski has the issue of Native Alaskans to deal with, which for her may be more important than the women’s vote.)

  82. Hal_10000 says:

    I found both of them to be credible, in different ways. Kavanaugh, I felt, was needlessly dissembling about his yearbook entry. We may never know what happened. Because it’s quite possible both are telling the truth as they see it. That an incident that two 17 y/o boys saw as harmless and forgettable crossed a 15 y/o girl as terrifying and traumatic.

    I think the Republicans would be wise to agree to an investigation. Yes, it’s unlikely to turn up anything new and we will end up right back here. But better to do the investigation than to have Kavanaugh spend his career under a cloud. Better to send the message that you’re taking it seriously than that you don’t care. Set the vote for ten days from now and let the FBI do … whatever they can.

    Unfortunately, the party is so in thrall to Trumpism that any concession is seen as abject surrender. So I expect they will push for the vote and we will live in the worst of all possible worlds.

    Key figures here: Murkowski, Collins and Flake. They can tell the committee that, without an investigation, they will vote Kavanaugh down.

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  83. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @HarvardLaw92: Yeah, but I doubt that he is slimy and unlikable enough for Republicans of any stripe to say “wait” instead of “git ‘er done.” They still have villages to rape and pillage and a Constitution to shred. Are there enough outraged people to vote these crapheads out? November will tell.

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  84. Scott says:

    The whole rant about the Clintons, left wing conspiracy, etc showed to me the true Brett Kavanaugh. Apparently, he can keep that rage under wraps for the most part but it is still there. To me that was disqualifying. Angry, hard right ideologue and not fit for the Supreme Court.

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  85. Modulo Myself says:

    Ford was 100% and Kavanaugh sounded a blustering abusive alcoholic, and he will be confirmed because the right-wing base needs this dynamic.

  86. Moosebreath says:

    @Scott:

    This. There is such a thing as a judicial temperment, and Kavanaugh seems to have the opposite of it.

  87. the Q says:

    Kavanaugh was a dry drunk today….he went from weepy, teary eyed puzzy to angry, belligerent attacker. He pretty much confirmed the two faced “nice guy turned groper when drinking” meme described by former students.

    Seems like Trump called him during the recess and told him to stop acting like a puss and man up!

  88. Modulo Myself says:

    There are 3 days before the final vote. That’s 3000 days in current time. I can actually see this 7/1 party becoming confirmed as the party by a witness, or somebody recanting. He gave himself away to anyone with a clue. He looked so guilty. Even so, I think he’s confirmed.

  89. HelloWorld! says:

    He was incredibly partisan and regardless of the circumstance. He he is a judge. That’s concerning. I don’t know who to believe but I would have really respected him if he took the high road. The courts cannot be partisan.

  90. Grewgills says:

    I didn’t get to see much of this, but I saw Kavanaugh lie at least once and not get called on it by either side. “Boofed” never meant farted, it means f^cked. He also came off an an entitled d!ck of a misogynistic fratboy. Unfortunately I don’t think any of it matters. We’ll get maybe one republican defection and he’ll be a worse version of Thomas on the supreme court for decades.

  91. Hal_10000 says:

    @Daryl and his brother Darryl:

    Kavanaugh now sounding very much like a predator.
    Angry. Strident. Petulant.

    Or the anger of someone who has been accused of running a gang rape ring in high school There’s more than one way to look at these things. My twitter feed – which samples Left and Right — was a good illustration of that today. Although even the Right agreed that Ford was sympathetic and coherent.

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  92. MBunge says:

    @Moosebreath: There is such a thing as a judicial temperment, and Kavanaugh seems to have the opposite of it.

    Gaslighting…everybody does it!

    You might remember a bit ago when James Joyner started talking about jungle politics and I added that some of you whom seem excited about that might not like it when it gets here? What you got from Kavanaugh and Graham today was just the barest hint and some of you couldn’t even handle that.

    Mike

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  93. Andre Kenji de Sousa says:

    Collins and Murkowski would be committing political suicide by voting for Kavanaugh.

  94. Scott O says:

    @Scott:

    The whole rant about the Clintons

    That was what really struck me. Here’s a guy complaining about accusations without proof doing just that. Someone who espouses insane conspiracy theories should not be a judge on any court.

    @Hal_10000:

    two 17 y/o boys saw as harmless and forgettable

    What if the accusation was that two 17 year old boys physically mistreated a 15 year old boy? I would call them sick bullies, tell them to try picking on someone their own size.

  95. Steve V says:

    @Hal_10000: then why did he lie so much?

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  96. Moosebreath says:

    @MBunge:

    “Gaslighting…everybody does it!”

    Showing everyone that the vast array of things you know nothing about includes the meaning of the term “gaslighting” is not going to help your cause much.

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  97. george says:

    @MarkedMan:

    That works too – perjury from a Supreme Court Justice is I suspect a first. Might even get some conservatives on board just on the principle that anyone who couldn’t come up with a way to talk his way around a question without perjuring himself is too stupid to be on SCOTUS.

  98. Andre Kenji de Sousa says:
  99. george says:

    @MBunge:

    You might remember a bit ago when James Joyner started talking about jungle politics and I added that some of you whom seem excited about that might not like it when it gets here?

    We now expect jungle politics from politicians. Judges are supposed to at least attempt to be non-partisan. You see it in some of the politically unlikely friendships on the court in the past – Scalia and Ginsburg for instance, and apparently Kagan and Alito also get along fairly well. Because they manage to keep out of jungle politics.

  100. Kylopod says:

    @Andre Kenji de Sousa: “Presumption of innocence” is the key phrase that will serve as the excuse for any on-the-fence votes to turn yes.

  101. Hal_10000 says:

    @Scott O:

    What if the accusation was that two 17 year old boys physically mistreated a 15 year old boy? I would call them sick bullies, tell them to try picking on someone their own size.

    Yes. I always hated “boys will be boys” as an excuse for rotten behavior. And I would say the same about two 17 y/o’s who — depending on what you believe — mistreated a 15 y/o girl. And I would say two 17 y/o’s who assaulted a 15 y/o should have the police called on them. My point is not the behavior was OK. My point is that bullies rarely see themselves as bullies; abusers rarely see themselves as a abusive and 17 y/o boys are fricking morons. This doesn’t have to be one or the other is lying. This can easily be two different people seeing the same event in two different ways — one traumatic and seared into her memory; the other not.

  102. DA says:

    I expect the R’s to confirm him, despite everything. But even if he isn’t confirmed, the idea that this is a hard vote for any of them and the fact that he certainly has 48 votes locked up, shows how degenerated the Republican party is. You know, even though Roy Moore lost, he still got 48.3% of the vote. That’s disgraceful even though the outcome was ok.

  103. Scott O says:

    @Hal_10000:

    My point is not the behavior was OK.

    I understand. I didn’t mean to imply that you were portraying it as OK. I get the argument that in his 17 year old slightly drunk (or more) mind he was just fooling around, meant no harm, was just gonna grab her a$$, not rape* her.

    This doesn’t have to be one or the other is lying. This can easily be two different people seeing the same event in two different ways — one traumatic and seared into her memory; the other not.

    I have to disagree with this. If they are both “seeing the same event”, ie remembering it in any way, then Kavanaugh is lying.

    * Old school definition, coitus against the will of the woman.

  104. Jim Brown 32 says:

    @One American: There more to come! Sucks when you have to drink from the same punch bowl you put a turd in doesn’t it? Predictably, (white) people like you then develop a sense of fairness, norms, civility, and “righteousness indignation”.

    Buckle up your jock strap… this slow march to engineer the SC at any cost is going to look pretty stupid once Team Blue starts packing it. Kava”nah” will then be even more of nothing burger. The white Clarence Thomas..bwahahahhhaahaaaaaaaa.

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  105. grumpy realist says:

    @One American: Yes, in a perfect world that would be nice. What are the chances that if she had tried that when she was 15 that she would have been called a slut, a skank, someone who asked for it, and a little bitch and a liar?

    You want a perfect world, get men to stop acting like jerks and stop calling women liars when said women DO report. Stop telling women that “they asked for it”, or that “it was their own fault”. Get teenage boys to stop acting like privileged brats and making up stories about a girl’s reputation simply because they think it’s funny.

    In short–grow up.

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  106. Jim Brown 32 says:

    @Jim Brown 32: Oh my…. I think I may have given Kava”nah” his court moniker.

    White Clarence….

  107. Mister Bluster says:

    @One American:..Save your preaching for some nieve person..

    …or someone who can spell…

  108. Mister Bluster says:

    @One American:.. you know nothing about me.

    We know you are “sitting up straight at attention” as your Supreme Leader Kim Jong Trump has demanded of you as he proclaims his domination over women.

    “I moved on her like a bitch, but I couldn’t get there. And she was married.”
    “I did try and fuck her. She was married.”
    “Just kiss. I don’t even wait. And when you’re a star, they let you do it. You can do anything.”
    “Grab them by the pussy. You can do anything.”
    REPUBLICAN President Pud