Vulnerable incumbent Senator Joe Donnelly, D-Ind., announced he will vote “No” to confirm Judge Brett Kavanaugh to the U.S. Supreme Court. The announcement comes one day after the nominee testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee to defend himself against 36-year-old, uncorroborated sexual assault allegations.
“While I would gladly welcome the opportunity to work with President Trump on a new nominee for this critically important position, if Judge Kavanaugh’s nomination comes before the full Senate for a vote under these circumstances, I will oppose it.”
Earlier Thursday, Professor Christine Blasey Ford gave emotional testimony before the committee, though offered nothing to corroborate the allegation. The nominee followed and put on a fact-filled and passionate defense of his name.
Professor Ford, a liberal activist and Palo Alto University psychology professor, alleged Judge Kavanaugh attempted to rape her at a high-school party in or about 1982, when he was 17 and she was 15. She can’t be certain of the year, how she got to and from the event, and has even given various versions of the story.
There is no contemporaneous evidence.
Mike Braun, the Republican candidate for U.S. Senate in Indiana, is pouncing on the decision.
“This entire process has been an embarrassment to our democracy as Hoosiers watched firsthand how Senator Donnelly’s liberal colleagues used uncorroborated allegations to create a media circus designed to smear and destroy Judge Kavanaugh’s reputation,” Mr. Braun said in a statement to People’s Pundit Daily (PPD). “Donnelly’s decision to oppose President Trump’s highly qualified nominee is a grave mistake, but proves he is more concerned with standing with his liberal Democrat leaders than standing for Hoosiers.”
“I continue to strongly support Judge Kavanaugh’s confirmation to the Supreme Court.”
Judge Kavanaugh, 53, serves on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. President Donald Trump moved on the nomination to replace Justice Anthony Kennedy, who announced a few weeks before that he would retire, effective July 31.
The Senate Judiciary Committee began holding hearings for the confirmation of Judge Kavanaugh on September 4. Despite Democrats attempting to obstruct, pay protestors and stage outbursts, they didn’t land a glove on him.
The allegation, which has been disputed by all parties mentioned in her account, including by her own friend, was made in a letter to Senator Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., the Ranking Member of the Senate Judiciary Committee. She withheld it for 6 weeks until after the committee held confirmation hearings.
Senator Feinstein denied she or any member of her staff leaked the letter. Professor Ford herself testified that only she, her lawyer, a Democrat representative and Senator Feinstein had access to the letter. She further testified that neither she nor her lawyer leaked it.
A vote in the Senate Judiciary Committee is scheduled for 1:15 PM EST on Friday. Senator Jeff Flake, R-Ariz., announced earlier Friday he will vote “Yes” to confirm Judge Kavanaugh. Sources tell PPD he was persuaded by the public remarks made by Senator Lindsey Graham, D-S.C., who hammered Democratic Senators for pulling “the most unethical sham” during the process.
“If you wanted an FBI investigation you could’ve come to us,” Senator Graham turned and shouted at his Democratic colleagues. “What you want to do is destroy this guy’s life, hold this seat open, and hope you win in 2020. You’ve said that. Not me.”
“You’ve got nothing to apologize for,” he said turning to the nominee.
“This is the most unethical sham since I’ve been in politics.”
Sources also tell PPD that Senator Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., who is running for reelection in a state President Donald Trump won by nearly 40 points, is leaning toward “Yes” on the confirmation. Senators Lisa Murkowski, R-Ak., and Susan Collins, R-Me., are still officially undecided.
Senator Chris Coons, D-De., is lobbying Senator Flake to change his vote.
PPD has learned at least Senator Collins received a call from former President George W. Bush, who has stood by Judge Kavanaugh and urged her to do so, as well.