Absent More Information, Kavanaugh Must Be Confirmed

 

This isn’t a matter of “credibility,” though that’s how the left is going to try to play it. It isn’t about “always believing the woman” (an idiotic concept). It’s about provable or disprovable evidence. Absent that, the Senate must do what it would have done had the accusation not been made.

Here’s why. The Senate has a Constitutional obligation to confirm or reject this[*] appointment. While every Senator is free to use whatever criteria he or she chooses in determining how to vote, the Senate as a whole has a duty to uphold the Constitution — and that means that the Senate can’t act in such a way as to make fulfilling that Constitutional duty impossible for all future Senates and all future confirmations.

As matters now stand, we have an accusation so vague as to be impossible to prove or disprove: no time, no place, no details before or after, no contemporaneous reporting, no witnesses. Absent further details, it is not possible to establish the veracity of the claims made against Kavanaugh. Mere credibility is inadequate: whatever one thinks of Ms. Ford’s claims, the reality is that there is no way to determine whether she is being truthful and correct, truthful but mistaken, or simply dishonest.

If the Senate rejects Kavanaugh on this basis, it has abrogated its responsibility and authority to confirm future justices. It will have set a precedent that allows any sufficiently compelling fraud to cast the deciding vote in confirmation hearings. This is true whether or not Ms. Ford is being honest.

Any Senator who would have voted to confirm Brett Kavanaugh prior to this allegation, but who opposes his confirmation now, is, though acting within his or her right as a Senator, nonetheless betraying the institution and contributing to the decline of what was once a dignified deliberative body.

Constitutional governance must not be surrendered to the mob — not even to a mob of one.

[* As Al Sparks has correctly pointed out in #44, no specific nominee must be confirmed or rejected. However, it does remain the Senate’s Constitutional duty to confirm or reject nominees.]

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  1. Nohaaj Coolidge
    Nohaaj
    @Nohaaj

    if only the honorable Senators would all act so honorably.

     

    Not holding my breath.

    • #1
  2. Gary Robbins Member
    Gary Robbins
    @GaryRobbins

    A great post.  It does come down to the rules of evidence, and knowing that we live in an imperfect world.  I wholly agree.

    • #2
  3. Mim526 Member
    Mim526
    @Mim526

    Andrew McCarthy has written another very good piece about the Kavanaugh hearing.  His observation about what Feinstein could have done to remain above board in the committee-hearing process is one I hadn’t read yet, but resonated:

    …don’t tell me Feinstein had to stay mum to honor Ford’s desire for anonymity. There is good reason to believe Ford had no intention of remaining anonymous (hiring Democrat-activist lawyers, taking a polygraph, etc.). But even if Ford truly wanted to remain unidentified, Senator Feinstein could easily have questioned Kavanaugh about the purported incident without mentioning Ford’s name. That would have preserved anonymity while adhering to the hearing process. Instead, the Democrats’ ranking committee member contemptuously undermined the committee’s process, and now other Senate Democrats are following her lead.

    I can hear the tough prosecuting attorney in his suggestion to give the accuser a noon today deadline to accept the committee’s offer of a Monday hearing, and if she declines to hold a vote on the originally scheduled Thursday :-)

    • #3
  4. Jim McConnell Member
    Jim McConnell
    @JimMcConnell

    Spot on as usual, @henryracette.

    My biggest concern in this whole, sordid mess it that in the future no respectable, qualified potential candidate for any appointive office will be willing to subject him/herself to the same ordeal to which Brett Kavanaugh has been subjected. His future will always bear the scars from the process he is going through. 

    • #4
  5. Spin Inactive
    Spin
    @Spin

    Jim McConnell (View Comment):

    Spot on as usual, @henryracette.

    My biggest concern in this whole, sordid mess it that in the future no respectable, qualified potential candidate for any appointive office will be willing to subject him/herself to the same ordeal to which Brett Kavanaugh has been subjected. His future will always bear the scars from the process he is going through.

    Our system seems to lend itself, more and more, to one of three kinds of people:

    Someone who is as pure as the driven snow – they don’t exist

    Someone who has a past and is real good at hiding it, or at least has cover from the media – Bill Clinton 

    Someone who has a past and just doesn’t give a rip – Donald Trump

    People who’ve got a past and are a bit embarrassed by it (you know, 90% of us), need no longer apply.  

    • #5
  6. Valiuth Inactive
    Valiuth
    @Valiuth

    Do they even have to vote on him? They never even gave a hearing to what’s his name because McConnell found it politically convenient. Seems to me the process of Senate confirmation is entirely arbitrary to begin with. What is there to ruin but the illusion? 

    • #6
  7. Columbo Member
    Columbo
    @Columbo

    Jim McConnell (View Comment):

    Spot on as usual, @henryracette.

    My biggest concern in this whole, sordid mess it that in the future no respectable, qualified potential candidate for any appointive office will be willing to subject him/herself to the same ordeal to which Brett Kavanaugh has been subjected. His future will always bear the scars from the process he is going through.

    Andy McCarthy and Judge Robert Bork agree with you … the end of civilization.

    • #7
  8. PHCheese Inactive
    PHCheese
    @PHCheese

    Saw where the Senator from Hawaii is suggesting to keep the seat open for the next two years. I wonder if she would feel that way if Ruthie Bater was  incapacitated .

    • #8
  9. Gary Robbins Member
    Gary Robbins
    @GaryRobbins

    One small point of a tactical nature.  

    The Dems have men and women, whites and minorities, and even a bald member!  We just have old grey white men with hair.  

    We really need a female Republican on the Judiciary Committee.  Martha McSally?

    • #9
  10. Gary Robbins Member
    Gary Robbins
    @GaryRobbins

    PHCheese (View Comment):

    Saw where the Senator from Hawaii is suggesting to keep the seat open for the next two years. I wonder if she would feel that way if Ruthie Bater was incapacitated .

    Mazie Hinono is hitting a new low.  I think that she is worse than Spartacus.

    • #10
  11. Seawriter Contributor
    Seawriter
    @Seawriter

    Gary Robbins (View Comment):
    We really need a female Republican on the Judiciary Committee. Martha McSally?

    She would need to get elected first. Didn’t you already say you were only voting for Democrats this November?

    • #11
  12. Spin Inactive
    Spin
    @Spin

    Seawriter (View Comment):

    Gary Robbins (View Comment):
    We really need a female Republican on the Judiciary Committee. Martha McSally?

    She would need to get elected first. Didn’t you already say you were only voting for Democrats this November?

    so burnt…

    • #12
  13. Henry Racette Moderator
    Henry Racette
    @HenryRacette

    Valiuth (View Comment):

    Do they even have to vote on him? They never even gave a hearing to what’s his name because McConnell found it politically convenient. Seems to me the process of Senate confirmation is entirely arbitrary to begin with. What is there to ruin but the illusion?

    In general, they do have to confirm or reject nominees, yes. They don’t have to do it on any particular time scale, and there was nothing wrong with what McConnell chose to do. (In fact, I think it was both smart and gracious.)

    The process worked pretty well for most of two centuries. Only in recent years has it become a circus, beginning with Robert Bork and thanks to increasingly irresponsible and partisan Democrats. What we’re seeing now is about the last step in turning it into a complete farce, which is why this can’t be allowed to happen.

    • #13
  14. Western Chauvinist Member
    Western Chauvinist
    @WesternChauvinist

    Evidence? This story has already occupied too much attention. Based on the evidence of Judge Kavanaugh’s eminent suitability, he must be confirmed. Period. There is no Trump appointment the Left will not try to sabotage.

    • #14
  15. Henry Racette Moderator
    Henry Racette
    @HenryRacette

    Spin (View Comment):

    Seawriter (View Comment):

    Gary Robbins (View Comment):
    We really need a female Republican on the Judiciary Committee. Martha McSally?

    She would need to get elected first. Didn’t you already say you were only voting for Democrats this November?

    so burnt…

    Cute. But Gary has always made it clear that he’ll vote only for Democratic Representatives. I’m sure Rep. McSally will get his vote.

    • #15
  16. Spin Inactive
    Spin
    @Spin

    Western Chauvinist (View Comment):

    Evidence? This story has already occupied too much attention. Based on the evidence of Judge Kavanaugh’s eminent suitability, he must be confirmed. Period. There is no Trump appointment the Left will not try to sabotage.

    Agreed.  We’ve spent far too much time on this.   

    • #16
  17. Sweezle Member
    Sweezle
    @Sweezle

    Here’s hoping the Senate moves ahead next week and a vote is held.

    Meanwhile there is a rather successful GoFundMe page raising money for the accuser:

    https://thehill.com/blogs/blog-briefing-room/news/407428-gofundme-campaign-raises-over-90k-to-cover-kavanaugh-accusers

    • #17
  18. Spin Inactive
    Spin
    @Spin

    Henry Racette (View Comment):
    Cute.

    Stop being so high brow!

    • #18
  19. Henry Racette Moderator
    Henry Racette
    @HenryRacette

    Spin (View Comment):

    Henry Racette (View Comment):
    Cute.

    Stop being so high brow!

    Your mom is high brow. 

    • #19
  20. Spin Inactive
    Spin
    @Spin

    Henry Racette (View Comment):

    Spin (View Comment):

    Henry Racette (View Comment):
    Cute.

    Stop being so high brow!

    Your mom is high brow.

    Now we’re talkin’!

    • #20
  21. JosePluma Coolidge
    JosePluma
    @JosePluma

    Henry Racette:

    . . .whether or not Ms. Ford is being honest.

    If she is being honest, it shows she is a coward and a slimy political operative who has put women and children in danger for 36 year for political gain. Or she could just be a deranged liar. Slimy political operative is also an option there, of course.

    • #21
  22. MarciN Member
    MarciN
    @MarciN

    The Republicans should stand by his appointment, just based alone on the work he did for Elián González.

    • #22
  23. Arthur Beare Member
    Arthur Beare
    @ArthurBeare

    Alas, Henry. there is an awful lot that has to happen between “must be confirmed” and will be confirmed. 

    The Repubs are a few balls short of making this happen on their own.  Of course it is possible that one or more Dems are disgusted by the behavior of their fellows and vote for the guy simply because he is well qualified for the post.  I suspect few of us would bet more than pocket change on that happening.   

    • #23
  24. PHCheese Inactive
    PHCheese
    @PHCheese

    Gary Robbins (View Comment):

    PHCheese (View Comment):

    Saw where the Senator from Hawaii is suggesting to keep the seat open for the next two years. I wonder if she would feel that way if Ruthie Bater was incapacitated .

    Mazie Hinono is hitting a new low. I think that she is worse than Spartacus.

    Someone should point out the hundreds of females convicted of raping students.

    • #24
  25. rico Inactive
    rico
    @rico

    Arthur Beare (View Comment):

    Alas, Henry. there is an awful lot that has to happen between “must be confirmed” and will be confirmed.

    The Repubs are a few balls short of making this happen on their own. …

    Technically true, but I’m confident that the two “cold-state” senators in question will vote with the boys.

    • #25
  26. Mim526 Member
    Mim526
    @Mim526

    Henry Racette (View Comment):

    Valiuth (View Comment):

    Do they even have to vote on him? They never even gave a hearing to what’s his name because McConnell found it politically convenient. Seems to me the process of Senate confirmation is entirely arbitrary to begin with. What is there to ruin but the illusion?

    In general, they do have to confirm or reject nominees, yes. They don’t have to do it on any particular time scale, and there was nothing wrong with what McConnell chose to do. (In fact, I think it was both smart and gracious.)

    The process worked pretty well for most of two centuries. Only in recent years has it become a circus, beginning with Robert Bork and thanks to increasingly irresponsible and partisan Democrats. What we’re seeing now is about the last step in turning it into a complete farce, which is why this can’t be allowed to happen.

    Dan McLaughlin wrote a couple of articles when Gorsuch was confirmed that provided a history of Senate judicial confirmations.  McConnell was acting in US Senate tradition.  According to McLaughlin:  “Only once in U.S. history (in 1888) has the Senate acted before Election Day to confirm a justice who was nominated in the last year of a presidential term by a president of the opposing party.”

    https://www.nationalreview.com/2017/03/neil-gorsuch-supreme-court-nominee-rejections-politics-has-lot-do-it/

    https://www.nationalreview.com/corner/it-doesnt-matter-garland-didnt-get-hearing/

     

    • #26
  27. tigerlily Member
    tigerlily
    @tigerlily

    Mim526 (View Comment):

    Henry Racette (View Comment):

    Valiuth (View Comment):

    Do they even have to vote on him? They never even gave a hearing to what’s his name because McConnell found it politically convenient. Seems to me the process of Senate confirmation is entirely arbitrary to begin with. What is there to ruin but the illusion?

    In general, they do have to confirm or reject nominees, yes. They don’t have to do it on any particular time scale, and there was nothing wrong with what McConnell chose to do. (In fact, I think it was both smart and gracious.)

    The process worked pretty well for most of two centuries. Only in recent years has it become a circus, beginning with Robert Bork and thanks to increasingly irresponsible and partisan Democrats. What we’re seeing now is about the last step in turning it into a complete farce, which is why this can’t be allowed to happen.

    Dan McLaughlin wrote a couple of articles when Gorsuch was confirmed that provided a history of Senate judicial confirmations. McConnell was acting in US Senate tradition. According to McLaughlin: “Only once in U.S. history (in 1888) has the Senate acted before Election Day to confirm a justice who was nominated in the last year of a presidential term by a president of the opposing party.”

    https://www.nationalreview.com/2017/03/neil-gorsuch-supreme-court-nominee-rejections-politics-has-lot-do-it/

    https://www.nationalreview.com/corner/it-doesnt-matter-garland-didnt-get-hearing/

     

    Thanks for the informative articles.

    • #27
  28. Henry Racette Moderator
    Henry Racette
    @HenryRacette

    Mim526 (View Comment):

    Henry Racette (View Comment):

    Valiuth (View Comment):

    Do they even have to vote on him? They never even gave a hearing to what’s his name because McConnell found it politically convenient. Seems to me the process of Senate confirmation is entirely arbitrary to begin with. What is there to ruin but the illusion?

    In general, they do have to confirm or reject nominees, yes. They don’t have to do it on any particular time scale, and there was nothing wrong with what McConnell chose to do. (In fact, I think it was both smart and gracious.)

    The process worked pretty well for most of two centuries. Only in recent years has it become a circus, beginning with Robert Bork and thanks to increasingly irresponsible and partisan Democrats. What we’re seeing now is about the last step in turning it into a complete farce, which is why this can’t be allowed to happen.

    Dan McLaughlin wrote a couple of articles when Gorsuch was confirmed that provided a history of Senate judicial confirmations. McConnell was acting in US Senate tradition. According to McLaughlin: “Only once in U.S. history (in 1888) has the Senate acted before Election Day to confirm a justice who was nominated in the last year of a presidential term by a president of the opposing party.”

    https://www.nationalreview.com/2017/03/neil-gorsuch-supreme-court-nominee-rejections-politics-has-lot-do-it/

    https://www.nationalreview.com/corner/it-doesnt-matter-garland-didnt-get-hearing/

    Thank you. In fact, the case is even a little stronger. Never has a Senate held by the President’s opposing party voted to confirm a Supreme Court nomination made in the final year of a lame duck presidency. This was the case when McConnell blocked the Garland appointment: the Senate was in Republican hands and Obama was a lame duck. In 1888, Grover Cleveland (D) stood for re-election to a second term. (He won the popular vote, but lost the electoral college; he was re-elected four years later, the only President to serve two non-contiguous terms.)

    In fact, if I remember correctly (I researched this a couple of years ago), not only has no Senate ever confirmed in such a situation, but the situation hadn’t even arisen until 2016: there had never been an appointment made to fill a lame-duck election year vacancy when the Senate was in opposing hands. The situation really was unique.

    • #28
  29. Matthew Singer Member
    Matthew Singer
    @MatthewSinger

    I guess all future Justices will need to be women.

    Jim McConnell (View Comment):

    Spot on as usual, @henryracette.

    My biggest concern in this whole, sordid mess it that in the future no respectable, qualified potential candidate for any appointive office will be willing to subject him/herself to the same ordeal to which Brett Kavanaugh has been subjected. His future will always bear the scars from the process he is going through.

     

    • #29
  30. blood thirsty neocon Inactive
    blood thirsty neocon
    @bloodthirstyneocon

    And Feinstein must be censured.

    • #30
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