Brett Kavanaugh accused of sexual assault

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JEFF MCEVOY

Senator Todd Young during a meeting with Judge Brett Kavanaugh, President Trump’s nominee to serve as Supreme Court justice. // Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

Supreme court nominee Brett Kavanaugh thought he had his seat in the Supreme Court secured until a scandal surfaced. A psychologist, Christine Blasey Ford, came forward with sexual assault allegations on Sept. 16.

According to Chris Cillizza from CNN, a vote had been set by the Senate Judiciary Committee with expectations of Kavanaugh receiving all 11 votes from the Republicans. Kavanaugh would have taken retiring Justice Anthony Kennedy’s seat. Kennedy is also a Republican.

Ford attended Holton-Arms School, an all-girls preparatory school in Bethesda, Maryland. She came forward claiming Kavanaugh had sexually assaulted her at a high school party in the 1980s during beach week, where high school kids would spend a week at the beach celebrating the end of the school year.

“The boys were pretty brutal,” said Andrea Evers, a friend of Blasey, in an interview with the Washington Post. “They would do what they could to get you drunk, and do whatever they would try to do to you.”

Kavanaugh stated that he had no memory of the assault occurring and denies the allegations.  Despite this, Ford has still agreed to give a testimony in front of the Senate Judiciary Committee. Kavanaugh will also testify in front of the committee. No matter the outcome of the hearing, these allegations have the potential to severely hurt Kavanaugh’s confirmation.

President Donald Trump, who nominated Kavanaugh, has repeatedly supported him against Ford’s allegations. He has tweeted numerous times about the allegations seemingly attacking Ford.

“I have no doubt that, if the attack on Dr. Ford was as bad as she says, charges would have been immediately filed with local Law Enforcement Authorities by either her or her loving parents. I ask that she bring those filings forward so that we can learn date, time, and place,” Trump said in a tweet on Sept. 21.

Trump has also complained about the gap of time since the assault and her allegations only recently surfacing. Time will certainly play a role in the case. However, the committee is not taking the accusations lightly.

“Due to the severe nature of the accusations, I think the amount of time since the potential crime occurred is not as important as in other lesser cases, but time will still play a role in the case,” said senior Holly Kozak. “As time progresses memories become more fuzzy and uncertain and it becomes easier to forget key details.”

Trump has no intentions of pulling his nomination. According to Allie Malloy from CNN, the White House fully believes Kavanaugh will still be confirmed after the hearing.  This has created an uproar of those in support of the #MeToo movement.

“The (White House) will (receive backlash); however, not from their base. The president’s base seems to have as solid an opinion on the nominee as the president’s opposition does,” said Associate Professor of Political Science Kyle Dell.  “The key demographic to watch in the weeks ahead will be the impact of next week’s events on the sliver of swing voters in marginal congressional races. In these races, even a small swing as a result of the nomination battle could have an impact on the control of Congress next year.”

The outcome is still very uncertain. The Republicans have a one seat advantage over the Democrats and could still vote Kavanaugh in regardless of Ford’s testimony after the hearing. If Ford’s testimony costs Kavanaugh his nomination, the White House will nominate another Republican.

“There is no trial. This is a job interview,” said Professor of Political Science Ken Gilmore. “Think if he was a child molester and did this years ago. He is just supposed to be forgiven? No, he still did it. There is no difference with sexual assault. He should not be forgiven. We’re not messing around here. You can’t find another nominee who didn’t do this? It’s about character. Should a human being who does this be appointed to the highest honor of court?”