Within the Republican pro-Trump bubble, Judge Brett M. Kavanaugh’s emotional and overwrought testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Thursday, September 27 is being hailed as the heartfelt outcry of a man who is being wrongly railroaded and slandered by Democratic Party partisans. But not everyone on the right sees it that way. And in a Washington Post commentary published the following day, journalist Max Boot—a NeverTrump right-winger who expressed his disdain for Donald Trump’s presidency by leaving the Republican Party—is as critical of Kavanaugh’s testimony as he is of Sen. Lindsey Graham and others on the Senate Judiciary Committee who ranted and raved on Kavanaugh’s behalf at the hearing.
Boot denounced Kavanaugh’s testimony as “evasive and deceptive” as well as “the most acerbic and abusive appearance of any nominee I have ever seen before any Senate committee,” adding, “His face contorted in anger, he blasted Senate Democrats for replacing ‘advise and consent with search and destroy,’ and turning the confirmation process into ‘a national disgrace.’”
Kavanaugh’s testimony, Boot asserted, “reflected a conspiratorial mindset—another hallmark of the modern GOP—when he charged that he was the victim of ‘pent-up anger about President Trump and the 2016 election’ and even of Democrats seeking ‘revenge on behalf of the Clintons.’ If that’s what this was about, why didn’t the previous Trump nominee to the Supreme Court, Neil M. Gorsuch, face any accusations of sexual assault?”
Boot’s criticism of Sen. Graham in his September 27 Washington Post piece was similar to the criticisms Graham received from another anti-Trump voice on the right: MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough, who asserted that the South Carolina senator has “gone from being John McCain’s wingman in politics to becoming Donald Trump’s carnival barker.” Boot, similarly, declared that Graham is now “bereft of the adult supervision once provided by former Senate colleague John McCain.”
Boot, noting that Graham “matched Kavanaugh outburst-for-outburst,” criticized the senator for not “seriously questioning Kavanaugh” at the hearing.
Kavanaugh supporters, Boot wrote, “don’t care what the evidence says about the possibility that Kavanaugh may be guilty of sexual assault charges. All that matters is sticking it to the ‘libtards.’”
Prior to Kavanaugh’s testimony, the Senate Judiciary Committee listened to the testimony of his first accuser: Palo Alto University psychology professor Christine Blasey Ford. Boot commented that he found Ford to be “utterly believable in proclaiming that Kavanaugh had sexually assaulted her.” And Boot was highly critical of Republicans who have refused Ford’s request for an FBI investigation of her sexual abuse allegations.
“Kavanaugh may well be wrongly accused,” Boot asserted, “but how, at this rate, will we ever know? He has a massive incentive to lie, and Ford does not.”
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