Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME), one of the swing votes during now-Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh's confirmation vote, went on CNN's "State of the Union" to explain how she decided to vote.
Initially, Collins said she was undecided about how she was going to vote, especially after Dr. Christine Blasey Ford's testimony in front of the Senate Judiciary Committee. She initially thought Kavanaugh should withdraw from the proceedings. The lack of corroborating evidence and the fundamental right of being innocent until proven guilty ultimately made Collins vote in favor of Kavanaugh.
Sen. Susan Collins: “After hearing Christine Ford’s very compelling and painful testimony, I thought...'perhaps he needs to withdraw' but then he came back with such a forceful denial … led me back to the fundamental issues that are fundamental to our legal system" pic.twitter.com/MXjyQoxz94— CNN Politics (@CNNPolitics) October 7, 2018
Instead of accepting Collins' reasoning, Dana Bash pressed the senator...and even tried to put words in her mouth.
"Do you still think it's possible that he [Kavanaugh] did it [sexually assaulted women] but you don't have the proof to back it up?" Bash asked Collins.
"I do not believe Brett Kavanaugh was her assailant. I do believe that she was assaulted. I don't know by whom, and I'm not certain when, but I do not believe he was the assailant," Collins replied.
"And so, people watching you, hearing you say that, you understand that they'll think you're saying you don't believe her?" Bash asked.
Bash then went into some mumble jumble about a he-said-she-said scenario in which Collins ultimately decided Kavanaugh was innocent.
.@SenatorCollins to @DanaBashCNN: "What I decided to use as standard was the question of: Is it more likely than not that Brett Kavanaugh assaulted Christine Ford? And there was no corroborating evidence that he did so." #CNNSOTU pic.twitter.com/0gPjEYDrS7— State of the Union (@CNNSotu) October 7, 2018
Bash's "interview" with Collins wasn't an interview at all. If anything, it was a sad attempt at shaming the senator for her vote. Just because Collins voted for Kavanaugh's confirmation does not mean that she doesn't believe Dr. Ford. It means she didn't find any corroborating evidence to suggest Kavanaugh was the assailant. The two conclusions are not a direct result of each other. It is possible to believe that someone was raped without believing that the person they accused was the perpetrator, especially when the accusations come up 30+ years after-the-fact.
CNN should be ashamed of their "journalist" and her so-called quest for the truth.
Here's a thought: Dana, if you're going to put Collins on trial for her decision, simply because you disagree with her outcome, then at least be up front about it. Don't disguise it as an "interview" and make sure you talk to the other 47 senators who voted alongside Sen. Collins. Let's see how your anti-male, pro-feminism type of questioning stands up over time.