The Corner

Law & the Courts

Thank You, Brett Kavanaugh

Over the past two weeks, Brett Kavanaugh has been subjected to the worst character assassination I have ever witnessed — and, trust me, that’s saying something. That’s why the decision made by Republicans to avoid a serious cross-examination of Christine Blasey Ford was so troubling. Had the hearing ended with the first session, subjective impressions of Ford’s sincerity may have triumphed over the actual facts and evidence.

But Kavanaugh in his opening statement did what Republican senators up to that point had failed to do. He laid out the entire case for his defense in a clear and accessible way. Though tinged by justifiable emotion, he grounded himself in the evidence. He repeatedly noted that the people whom Ford placed at the party, including a female friend of hers, could not recall any such party. That fact, which in a rational world would have ended the matter before the hearing was even held, needed to be stated repeatedly. Kavanaugh recognized that, even if his Republican allies in the room did not.

As a numbers geek, I don’t usually write about issues of pure politics. But I wanted to express my gratitude to Brett Kavanaugh for being a fighter. Lesser men would have shied away, and, sadly, bravery is not something that the Republican establishment is known for. With the force of his arguments, Brett Kavanaugh may have changed that. We should all follow his example.

Jason Richwine is a public-policy analyst and a contributor to National Review Online.

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