White House Deputy Press Secretary Raj Shah responded Tuesday to a tweet from the father of a Parkland shooting victim, Fred Guttenberg, who said that Judge Kavanaugh “turned his back” to him and likely “didn’t want to discuss gun violence.” Guttenberg's attempt to speak with Kavanaugh was also captured in an Associated Press photograph.
Shah explained that security intervened before President Trump’s Supreme Court nominee was able to shake Guttenberg’s hand, showing a full video of the incident.
Some in the media, gun control groups, and Parkland student activists were upset by the interaction and initial photo, claiming that Kavanaugh was intentionally ignoring Guttenberg.
Most pictures are worth a thousand words...— David Hogg (@davidhogg111) September 4, 2018
This picture is worth thousands of lives call your senators now and tell them to not appoint Kavanaugh 202-224-3121
The NRA has spent millions of dollars to appoint Kavanaugh it's going to take 1000s of phone calls to stop this man. pic.twitter.com/R2h65VQs4k
Fred Guttenberg, the father of Jamie Guttenberg who was killed in the shooting in Parkland, Fla., left, tries to shake hands with @realDonaldTrump's Supreme Court nom., Brett Kavanaugh, right, during a lunch break. Kavanaugh did not shake his hand. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik) @ap pic.twitter.com/smcCGuLT6X— Andrew Harnik (@andyharnik) September 4, 2018
Please let this be— Stephanie Ruhle (@SRuhle) September 4, 2018
Politics & policy aside, decency must prevail
It was a taxing, chaotic & stressful day.
Let’s hope this was just a mixup.#decencyfirst https://t.co/HPD2AMWG93
The image that may come to define the first day of the Kavanaugh hearings. https://t.co/gkVyvUMxIu— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) September 4, 2018
Democrats have reportedly begun to fundraise off of the moment.
Democrats already running FB ads on the Guttenberg-Kavanaugh moment. Am told there will be Instagram and Twitter ads too pic.twitter.com/0u6wjGyAeS— Sam Stein (@samstein) September 4, 2018