The potential nomination of Judge Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court has maintained its headline momentum for three consecutive weeks. What was once a semi-routine procedure, such as what took place during the nomination of Justice Neil Gorsuch, has become a spectacle pushing the limits of civil political dispute. Originally discussed in the September 12 edition of the Anchor, Kavanaugh’s nomination is no new political controversy. While original objections to Kavanaugh’s nomination originally centered on line-item political stances such as immigration and religious liberty, that appears to no longer be the case.
Concerns over the potential overturn of Roe v. Wade faded as questions of racial profiling were raised. These concerns were championed by Senator Cory Booker (D-N.J.) as he called for the release of emails concerning Kavanaugh’s position on the subject. Despite the documents originally being classified as confidential, Booker announced on Thursday, September 6 that his office would be releasing the documents to the public at whatever legal cost it would bring him, declaring it to be his “Spartacus” moment.
Things became further complicated as news outlets learned the documents had already been cleared several hours before Booker’s act of “civil disobedience.” More was to come of the situation, covered again in the following week’s Anchor article. Allegations of sexual misconduct made their way to the forefront of the confirmation hearings as early as the 13th, as federal investigators were notified regarding claims by a woman who would later be revealed as Christine Blasey Ford, a California professor of statistics. Ford claims that Kavanaugh attempted to sexually assault her during a high school party. The legitimacy of her claims are the flashpoint that the nomination hinges on. Republicans, who have a vested interest in the hearings proceeding as normal, are the driving force for a potential investigation to happen quickly and decisively.
Democrats, however, are incentivized to stall the hearings as much as possible in the name of sensitivity. The Senate Judiciary Committee has, at the time of this writing, come to an agreement with Ford’s lawyers for Dr. Blasey to speak Thursday regarding her claim. Tentative conditions have been decided such that, while he will most likely be asked to speak first sequentially, Kavanaugh will be able to publicly defend himself. The hightened stakes are not lost on the political world, nor on the general public.
Ideals such as “innocent until proven guilty” are being ideologically pitted against “all victims deserve to be believed.” While these accusations aren’t a first for Supreme Court confirmation, the added division of the current political environment has many struggling to rectify their ideals about the American justice system. As of the time of this writing, another accuser, Deborah Ramirez, has very recently come forward with a similar accusation regarding Kavanaugh’s college years. More is expected to develop this week.