I Was Wrong: Rachel Mitchell Was Great

 

I was unable to listen live to the Senate hearing, but I have listened to all of Ford’s testimony and I want to correct myself from a comment I made last night: Rachel Mitchell did a great job.

I am glad the Republicans used her to expose Ford.

  1. She made Ford appear to deny ever having heard of forensic interviews, even though she has a doctorate in psychology and spoke repeatedly about the biochemical processes of how memory works during her testimony.
  2. She got Ford to admit that rather than have a forensic interview, she had a polygraph test paid for by Democrats.
  3. She got Ford to admit that the polygraph, which someone else paid for, was taken the day of her grandmother’s funeral.
  4. She got Ford to admit that she was not paying her attorneys.
  5. She got Ford to sound confused over her testimony: Was the music too loud for anyone to hear her screams? If so, how did Ford hear her assailants going down the stairs? How did she hear the conversation downstairs?

Ford’s injured little-girl voice was not convincing in a woman of her supposed professional accomplishments. Her credibility is nil.

This will not matter to anyone on the Democrat side, since the truth and they have only a nodding acquaintance, and it will likely have zero play in the media, but Ford looked ridiculous by the end of Mitchell’s bland, mild, relentless quizzing. Well done.

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  1. SParker Member
    SParker
    @SParker

    I thought the first point of the OP  (which I think was the last question) was brilliant–not because of Dr. Ford’s lack of knowledge or inquiry, but for making the point that her lawyers don’t have her interests at heart.  Prepares the ground for the attack on the villain of the piece, Senator Feinstein, begun with by Senator Graham’s barrage.

    • #31
  2. Dorrk Inactive
    Dorrk
    @Dorrk

    WI Con (View Comment):

    Glad you noted the “scared little girl” voice. What the hell was that? I turned it off after listening to that for about 5 minutes. It was absurd.

    Isn’t this common among survivors of childhood sexual abuse?

    • #32
  3. CB Toder aka Mama Toad Member
    CB Toder aka Mama Toad
    @CBToderakaMamaToad

    Dorrk (View Comment):

    Isn’t this common among survivors of childhood sexual abuse?

    I listened to her whole testimony. She used it well past the parts where she was talking about the alleged incident. It went on and on, even when she was talking about where her country club was.

    Nails on a blackboard, I say again.

    • #33
  4. Gary Robbins Member
    Gary Robbins
    @GaryRobbins

    Stad (View Comment):

    RightAngles (View Comment):

    Jon1979 (View Comment):

    CB Toder aka Mama Toad (View Comment):

    Jon1979 (View Comment):
    In hindsight, Mitchell’s line of questioning worked because of what followed, with Kavanaugh and Graham.

    I actually wrote this post while I was still listening to Kavanaugh’s opening statement, so I obviously thought it worked on its own.

    To me, it worked insofar as giving the Democrats no sound bites to turn into a major issue, and allowing Ford to show her own shakiness on facts. But I think her opening statement was powerful enough to say that, at the very least, she believes something happened. For the four wavering Republicans, that might have been enough to sway at least two of them to vote ‘no’ without Kavanaugh’s statement, and Graham laying out the case after that as to what a ‘no’ vote would mean, based on the lack of evidence Ford presented for him being her attacker.

    I don’t care if something happened! It is immaterial, sad though it may be, if she can’t prove it or at least even remember where and when it happened, and this whole circus was orchestrated to be this way by the most corrupt and unethical version of the DNC that has ever existed in my lifetime.

    This matter could have been handled privately and investigated the way the Dems claim they wanted had they not purposely and cynically hidden it until the 11th hour, timing its release to do the most political damage rather than to find the truth. And look at them today. They have utterly no shame at all. One of them just said they plan to continue their “FBI investigation” even after he’s confirmed! They plan to hound this man and his family for the rest of their lives. I can’t even find a word to express the depths of the disgust I feel.

    I feel the same disgust. How can any decent person support a party whose leaders are so vile?

    You realize a majority of American view Trump as vile?  I am not in love with the Democrats, but you should address the plurality of the party that nominated the vile Trump.  I hope Americans will some day forgive us.

    • #34
  5. Arizona Patriot Member
    Arizona Patriot
    @ArizonaPatriot

    Lois Lane (View Comment):

    Also, @arizonapatriot, I’m not going to pretend that I made this distinction. Someone else on Ricochet wrote about it. I do think there’s something different between the words “credible” and “sympathetic.”

    I didn’t find the woman to be either, but I can understand the second.

    There’s an old joke about having what we call “the legal mind.”  Something like: “If you think that you can think about a thing inextricably attached to something else without thinking of the thing which it is attached to, then you have a legal mind.”

    In my mind, I separate the question of the credibility of a witness from the credibility of the testimony.

    The credibility of a witness is a question of demeanor, emotion, and presentation.  The credibility of the testimony includes the credibility of the witness, plus inconsistencies, gaps, or ambiguities in the testimony.

    [Subsequent addition.]  Even credible testimony need not be believed.  It can be rebutted by other testimony or evidence.

    • #35
  6. Lois Lane Coolidge
    Lois Lane
    @LoisLane

    Gary Robbins (View Comment):

    Stad (View Comment):

    RightAngles (View Comment):

    Jon1979 (View Comment):

    CB Toder aka Mama Toad (View Comment):

    Jon1979 (View Comment):
    In hindsight, Mitchell’s line of questioning worked because of what followed, with Kavanaugh and Graham.

    I actually wrote this post while I was still listening to Kavanaugh’s opening statement, so I obviously thought it worked on its own.

    To me, it worked insofar as giving the Democrats no sound bites to turn into a major issue, and allowing Ford to show her own shakiness on facts. But I think her opening statement was powerful enough to say that, at the very least, she believes something happened. For the four wavering Republicans, that might have been enough to sway at least two of them to vote ‘no’ without Kavanaugh’s statement, and Graham laying out the case after that as to what a ‘no’ vote would mean, based on the lack of evidence Ford presented for him being her attacker.

    I don’t care if something happened! It is immaterial, sad though it may be, if she can’t prove it or at least even remember where and when it happened, and this whole circus was orchestrated to be this way by the most corrupt and unethical version of the DNC that has ever existed in my lifetime.

    This matter could have been handled privately and investigated the way the Dems claim they wanted had they not purposely and cynically hidden it until the 11th hour, timing its release to do the most political damage rather than to find the truth. And look at them today. They have utterly no shame at all. One of them just said they plan to continue their “FBI investigation” even after he’s confirmed! They plan to hound this man and his family for the rest of their lives. I can’t even find a word to express the depths of the disgust I feel.

    I feel the same disgust. How can any decent person support a party whose leaders are so vile?

    You realize a majority of American view Trump as vile? I am not in love with the Democrats, but you should address the plurality of the party that nominated the vile Trump. I hope Americans will some day forgive us.

    I’m no Trump fan, but I think that’s irrelevant here.  These smears are vile all on their own.  They make me sick, and it’s not Donald Trump who is driving this process.  Spartacus and crowd have an agenda all their own, and I hope they’re held to account.  I appreciate that the president is standing behind Kavenaugh.

    • #36
  7. Suspira Member
    Suspira
    @Suspira

    Richard O'Shea (View Comment):
    Lindsey Graham saved the nomination, and gave us Justice Kavanaugh.

    Knock on wood! Let’s not count our justices before they’re hatched.

    • #37
  8. Gossamer Cat Coolidge
    Gossamer Cat
    @GossamerCat

    SParker (View Comment):
    but for making the point that her lawyers don’t have her interests at heart.

    Gregg Jarrett lays out the case here.  

    • #38
  9. Lumimies Member
    Lumimies
    @Lumimies

    My impressions of Dr. Ford were mostly that there were some very odd things about her. First, the whole time I was acutely aware that this was a trained research psychologist; someone who knows the human mind and therefore how to manipulate the human mind. I wondered the whole time if what I was seeing was her, or an affectation. Second, what was the deal with her glasses? When she had them on, she moved like she couldn’t see. She was constantly looking over them, or pushing them up on her forehead. They were also covered in smudges and fingerprints, obvious in every close up. It was just very odd.

    • #39
  10. RightAngles Member
    RightAngles
    @RightAngles

    Lumimies (View Comment):

    My impressions of Dr. Ford were mostly that there were some very odd things about her. First, the whole time I was acutely aware that this was a trained research psychologist; someone who knows the human mind and therefore how to manipulate the human mind. I wondered the whole time if what I was seeing was her, or an affectation. Second, what was the deal with her glasses? When she had them on, she moved like she couldn’t see. She was constantly looking over them, or pushing them up on her forehead. They were also covered in smudges and fingerprints, obvious in every close up. It was just very odd.

    And I thought those glasses looked like they were from the 1980s, as huge as they were. All in all she was a very odd person. And she looks 10 years older than she is. I mean she actually looks like she’s had a very stressful time of it in life. Whether the things she’s been through were actually that horrible objectively or if it’s just that they affected her more than they would have a normal person is open for discussion.

    • #40
  11. Lois Lane Coolidge
    Lois Lane
    @LoisLane

    I don’t think she looked a lot older than she is.  She’s in her fifties, right?  Big glasses are used by people who want to hide.  Or look smart.   Who knows.  Maybe they were readers.  

    I am probably the only person on the planet who doesn’t think what happened to her should have done much to her at all except made her more cautious around drinking people.

    I don’t know.

    To me, to call her experience as she described it “sexual assault” takes a bit of the gravity out of the phrase.  

    I don’t mean to be insensitive or harsh, but I’ve always been bothered by how being pushed on a bed in high school has been equated with the trauma of being raped or sexually molested.  

    I’m sorry for her if she was damaged so much by this experience she had with someone else.

    im no psychologist, but I think making the “assaulter” into an important man in her own mind might make the incident itself more significant.

    • #41
  12. Suspira Member
    Suspira
    @Suspira

    Lois Lane (View Comment):

    To me, to call her experience as she described it “sexual assault” takes a bit of the gravity out of the phrase.

    I don’t mean to be insensitive or harsh, but I’ve always been bothered by how being pushed on a bed in high school has been equated with the trauma of being raped or sexually molested.

    Yes! That’s why squishy terms like “sexual assault” or the even more squishy “sexual harassment” are so useful for character assassination.

    • #42
  13. HoosierDaddy Member
    HoosierDaddy
    @HoosierDaddy

    Andy McCarthy in National Review has his usual expert opinion on this topic. [the title of the article isa bout the theme of “delay”; the Mitchell discussion appears in the middle of the article]

    https://www.nationalreview.com/2018/09/republicans-should-not-have-delayed-the-kavanaugh-vote/

     

    • #43
  14. E. Kent Golding Member
    E. Kent Golding
    @EKentGolding

    This wasn’t a trial,  and the purposes were not legal , but political.  It may have been how Grassley & the Republicans set up the hearing rather than her fault,    but Mitchell did not effectively make the political case that Ford’s testimony was insufficient  ( an unsupported accusation is not sufficient.  Anyone can accuse anyone of anything .),  nor that her testimony was internally inconsistent,  nor that her testimony was flat out contradicted by everyone she claimed to be present.   On a factual basis,  Mitchell did fine I am sure.   On an emotional & political basis,  Mitchell provided zero benefit,  in fact was a lost opportunity.

     

     

     

    • #44
  15. CB Toder aka Mama Toad Member
    CB Toder aka Mama Toad
    @CBToderakaMamaToad

    E. Kent Golding (View Comment):
    On a factual basis, Mitchell did fine I am sure. On an emotional & political basis, Mitchell provided zero benefit, in fact was a lost opportunity.

    You write your comment with comfortable hindsight.

    But I think your hindsight is misleading, since you believe that the alternative, the Republican Judiciary Committee members interviewing her themselves, would have been any better.

    Can you imagine the field day the media would have had if Chuck Grassley, a fine man, I am sure, but one who cannot tell you what time it is without sounding like an old white male who stutters and stumbles a lot, had tried to quiz Ford himself?

    I assure you, Rachel Mitchell did a great job.

    • #45
  16. E. Kent Golding Member
    E. Kent Golding
    @EKentGolding

    CB Toder aka Mama Toad (View Comment):

    E. Kent Golding (View Comment):
    On a factual basis, Mitchell did fine I am sure. On an emotional & political basis, Mitchell provided zero benefit, in fact was a lost opportunity.

    You write your comment with comfortable hindsight.

    But I think your hindsight is misleading, since you believe that the alternative, the Republican Judiciary Committee members interviewing her themselves, would have been any better.

    Can you imagine the field day the media would have had if Chuck Grassley, a fine man, I am sure, but one who cannot tell you what time it is without sounding like an old white male who stutters and stumbles a lot, had tried to quiz Ford himself?

    I assure you, Rachel Mitchell did a great job.

    True about the hindsight, however: the alternative may have been better instructions to Mitchell, and a format that didn’t prevent any flow or continuity.   Maybe Rachel Mitchell did do a great job;   the end result was failure.  Perhaps the republicans could have gotten Nicki Haley or another republican female politician rather than a female prosecutor.

    • #46
  17. HoosierDaddy Member
    HoosierDaddy
    @HoosierDaddy

    CB Toder aka Mama Toad (View Comment):

    E. Kent Golding (View Comment):
    On a factual basis, Mitchell did fine I am sure. On an emotional & political basis, Mitchell provided zero benefit, in fact was a lost opportunity.

    You write your comment with comfortable hindsight.

    But I think your hindsight is misleading, since you believe that the alternative, the Republican Judiciary Committee members interviewing her themselves, would have been any better.

    Can you imagine the field day the media would have had if Chuck Grassley, a fine man, I am sure, but one who cannot tell you what time it is without sounding like an old white male who stutters and stumbles a lot, had tried to quiz Ford himself?

    I assure you, Rachel Mitchell did a great job.

    I would say you are both right, and the biggest problem was there just wasn’t enough time to complete what Mitchell was building up to. Imagine how many hours – – days! – – she would be on the stand at a criminal trial.  (of course I know that her accusation would never actually merit an indictment, just thinking hypothetically)

    • #47
  18. HoosierDaddy Member
    HoosierDaddy
    @HoosierDaddy

    I think there has been a consensus built up to from this and other posts, that at a future  Senate confirmation hearing, any allegations of criminal offenses must go through a due process long before the public hearing, just as in criminal and civil trials.

    This incident was a tragic dilemma for the people of the United States. The Democrats would get a huge benefit from a delay of the confirmation, and they had the leverage of “her voice must be heard”.

    This is of the “October surprise” species, and the Republicans were between a monumental rock and a hard place. Gibraltar-size.

    All we have now is our hindsight whether they chose the least bad of only bad options in letting Ford speak at the Senate while trying to minimize delays.  We’ll never know the truth of the wisdom; we will only know if we *win*, first in confirming Kavanaugh, then in the midterm elections.   Sadly, I feel like General Turgidson in Dr Strangelove (George C. Scott)  saying, “Mr President, we find ourselves in the position of choosing between two, both very horrible, but nevertheless discernible, outcomes. Follow my option, and I guarantee you at most twenty million American deaths – – – tops!”

    That reminds me:   we are still due for October surprises no matter what happens with the Supreme Court.

    • #48
  19. kylez Member
    kylez
    @kylez

    RightAngles (View Comment):

    iWe (View Comment):

    But her lawyers (Katz) was recommended by DiFi’s office! She said this in the Q&A.

    So DiFi coordinated the whole thing.

    Katz ia nothing but a smarmy DNC hack. In the 90s they used her to go out and spread their talking points that Paula Jones had no case.

    Ironic, huh?

    • #49
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