Politics & Policy

McConnell on Kavanaugh Claims: ‘A Smear Campaign, Pure & Simple’

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell speaks to reporters in Washington, January 30, 2018. (Joshua Roberts/Reuters)

Senator Mitch McConnell laid into Democrats Monday afternoon, calling their approach to Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation a “smear campaign, pure and simple.”

“Even by the far Left’s standards, this shameful, shameful smear campaign has hit a new low,” the Republican majority leader said on the Senate floor. “Senate Democrats and their allies are trying to destroy a man’s personal and professional life on the basis of decades-old allegations that are unsubstantiated and uncorroborated.”

On Sunday, a second woman came forward with allegations of sexual misconduct against the nominee. Deborah Ramirez told The New Yorker that Kavanaugh exposed himself to her when she was inebriated at a party during their freshman year at Yale University in the early 1980s.

The first accuser, Christine Blasey Ford, is expected to testify on Thursday regarding her claim that Kavanaugh drunkenly attempted to rape her at a party when both were in high school.

Rumors of other accusers have also made the rounds in the media and on the Hill. Attorney Michael Avenatti announced on Twitter shortly after the Ramirez allegation broke that he represents “a woman with credible information regarding Judge Kavanaugh.”

“We are aware of significant evidence of multiple house parties in the Washington, D.C. area during the early 1980s during which Brett Kavanaugh, Mark Judge and others would participate in the targeting of women with alcohol/drugs in order to allow a ‘train’ of men to subsequently gang rape them,” Avenatti wrote in a letter to the chief counsel for nominations for the Senate Judiciary Committee.

McConnell accused Democrats of engaging in what appears to be a “choreographed smear campaign that ignored Dr. Ford’s request for confidentiality in order to inflict maximum damage, maximum damage at the last minute on Judge Kavanaugh and his family.”

“Whatever it took, whatever the truth really was, they were going to whatever they could to stop this qualified, experienced, and mainstream nominee,” the majority leader said. “Democrats have signaled for months they’d put on whatever performance the far-left special interests demanded and throw all the mud they could manufacture. . . . This is what the so-called resistance has become. A smear campaign, pure and simple, aided and abetted by members of the United States Senate.”

McConnell also defended the process adopted by the Judiciary Committee’s Republican cohort, saying Chairman Chuck Grassley has gone “above and beyond” to accommodate Ford’s testimony, while “in the meantime, a good and honorable man and his family are receiving death threats.”

“Before they’d reviewed a lick of evidence, before they’d heard a minute of testimony, Democrats had already made up their mind and chosen their tactics: delay, obstruct, and resist,” the Kentucky Republican said.

“I want to make it perfectly clear: This fine nominee to the Supreme Court will receive a vote in this Senate in the near future.”

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