NEW YORK — 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 clinical-psychology professor 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 which this boozy soiree supposedly transpired, 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.
“We are doing everything that we can to make Dr. Ford comfortable with coming before our committee either in an open session or a closed session, or a public or a private interview,” Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Charles Grassley (R- Iowa) told journalists on Wednesday. “That’s four different ways she can choose to come.”
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.”
“This is a completely false allegation. I have never done anything like what the accuser describes — to her or to anyone,” Kavanaugh said in a statement Monday. “I am willing to talk to the Senate Judiciary Committee in any way the Committee deems appropriate to refute this false allegation, from 36 years ago, and defend my integrity.”
• “Dr. Christine Blasey Ford remembers me as the other person in the room during the alleged assault,” Mark Judge stated Tuesday. “In fact, I have no memory of this alleged incident. Brett Kavanaugh and I were friends in high school but I do not recall the party described in Dr. Ford’s letter. More to the point, I never saw Brett act in the manner Ford describes.”
• “I understand that I have been identified by Dr. Christine Blasey Ford as the person she remembers as ‘PJ’ who supposedly was present at the party she described in her statements to the Washington Post,” Patrick J. Smyth declared to the Senate Judiciary Committee. “I have no knowledge of the party in question; nor do I have any knowledge of the allegations of improper conduct she has leveled against Brett Kavanaugh.”
“Personally speaking, I have known Brett Kavanaugh since high school and I know him to be a person of great integrity, a great friend, and I have never witnessed any improper conduct by Brett Kavanaugh towards women.”
Beside these men, Lady Justice weighs 166 individual women who stand with Kavanaugh. Several open letters — 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 the Senate Judiciary Committee on September 14. “For the entire time we have known Brett Kavanaugh, he has behaved honorably and treated women with respect.”
“We knew Brett well through social events, sports, church, and various other activities,” they added. “Many of us have remained close friends with him and his family over the years. Through the more than 35 years we have known him, Brett has stood out for his friendship, character, and integrity. In particular, he has always treated women with decency and respect. That was true when he was in high school, and it has remained true to this day.”
• “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. “The West Wing is a small place. The hours are long, and the pressure is intense. You get to know your colleagues well in those conditions. And in Brett Kavanaugh, we got to know a brilliant lawyer, a thoughtful friend, and a man of the highest integrity.”
“As former colleagues of Brett’s, we know his commitment 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 on the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit,” 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…This letter is signed by every single one of Judge Kavanaugh’s clerks not prohibited by their current or pending employment from signing…It was a tremendous stroke of luck to work for and be mentored by a person of his strength of character, generosity of spirit, intellectual capacity, and unwavering care for his family, friends, colleagues, and us, his law clerks.”
“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 has a great sense of humor and an easy laugh. (Some of us are funny, most of us are not, and yet he laughs at all our jokes.)…He makes it to every wedding, answers every career question, and gives unflinchingly honest advice.”
Not in the balance are other women who say that Kavanaugh mistreated them. Paula Jones, Kathleen Willey, and Juanita Brodderick — at a minimum — say that Bill Clinton sexually abused them. Six women reported that former CBS chief Les Moonves misbehaved sexually. Eight women blasted former senator Al Franken (D – Minnesota) as sexually inappropriate. Sixty women condemned fallen comedian Bill Cosby as a sexual predator. Seventy women denounced disgraced film tycoon Harvey Weinstein as a sexual monster.
Where is Brett Kavanaugh’s parade of victims?
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.