Brett Kavanaugh, a judge of the highest caliber, now finds himself being judged, although in the decidedly lawless court of public opinion. As such, Kavanaugh, 53, confronts Lady Justice and her pair of scales.
On one side rests Palo Alto University professor of clinical psychology Christine Blasey Ford, 51. She claimed in the Washington Post and in a letter to Senator Dianne Feinstein (D – California) that in the summer of 1982, she attended a party at a home in Montgomery County, Maryland. That evening, Ford said, a “stumbling drunk” Kavanaugh, then 17, threw the then-15-year-old on a bed, mounted her, groped her, and tried to yank off her bathing suit.
“I thought he might inadvertently kill me,” Ford said. “He was trying to attack me and remove my clothing.” Ford said that she tried to scream, but Kavanaugh’s hand muted her mouth.
Ford added that Mark Judge, Kavanaugh’s schoolmate, jumped on the bed and knocked the trio onto the floor; she then escaped.
Ford is befogged about who owned the house in question, how she arrived, or how she got home. Why, in contrast, is she so crystal clear that Kavanaugh committed this “rape attempt,” as she described it? At this writing, senators await Ford’s testimony.
Ford currently refuses to speak until the FBI investigates this matter. Why she cannot express herself without FBI intervention is also a mystery.
On the other side, Lady Justice weighs the words of three men:
• “I categorically and unequivocally deny this allegation,” Kavanaugh said September 14. “I did not do this back in high school or at any time.”
• “I do not recall the party described in Dr. Ford’s letter,” Mark Judge stated Tuesday. “I never saw Brett act in the manner Ford describes.”
• “I have no knowledge of the party in question,” alleged eyewitness Patrick J. Smyth told Judiciary, “nor do I have any knowledge of the allegations of improper conduct she has leveled against Brett Kavanaugh.”
Beside these men, Lady Justice weighs 166 individual women who stand with Kavanaugh. Several openletters — as well as articles and other communications — find women offering Kavanaugh deeply touching, genuinely moving messages of support, friendship, and profound affection.
• “We are women who have known Brett Kavanaugh for more than 35 years and knew him while he attended high school between 1979 and 1983,” 65 different women wrote Senate Judiciary on September 14. “For the entire time we have known Brett Kavanaugh, he has behaved honorably and treated women with respect.”
• “We are women who served with Brett Kavanaugh in White House staff positions during President George W. Bush’s Administration. We are united in our admiration for Judge Kavanaugh as a public servant and as a person,” 84 more women wrote Judiciary on August 29. “As former colleagues of Brett’s, we know hiscommitment to equal treatment of women in the workplace and are especially proud of his efforts to encourage and support women lawyers,” they continued. “More than half of Brett’s law clerks have been women, and he has worked tirelessly to support them in their legal careers.”
• “Each of us has had the privilege of clerking for Judge Brett Kavanaugh,” according to a July 9 letter signed by 34 of Kavanaugh’s clerks — 17 of them women. “Our ranks include Republicans, Democrats, and Independents. But we are united in this: our admiration and fondness for Judge Kavanaugh run deep.
“Judge Kavanaugh has been a role model to us personally as well as professionally,” the letter continues. “He is grounded and kind. Judge Kavanaugh is a dedicated husband and father to two girls, Liza and Margaret, and an enthusiastic coach of both their youth basketball teams…He makes it to every wedding, answers every career question, and gives unflinchingly honest advice.”
The next few days should diffuse much of the smoke that infuses this imbroglio. Things may end entirely differently. But for now, the scales of justice tilt decidedly in Kavanaugh’s favor: 169-1.