As Senate Republicans continue to insist that Christine Blasey Ford, the woman who has accused Brett Kavanaugh of sexually assaulting her as a teenager, either appear before their hastily-convened reverse kangaroo court on Monday or otherwise forever hold her peace, some of the politico types who wore their best performative empathy masks when the story first came to light are growing far less shy about saying how comfortable they are with the distinct possibility that an alleged abuser and serial liar will soon sit on the Supreme Court. Which is to say: pretty comfortable, actually!
On Tuesday, Nevada senator and soon-to-be-unemployed man Dean Heller assured a reporter that it was deeply important to him and his Senate colleagues that they get to the bottom of Ford's story. On Wednesday, in a "VIP" conference call arranged by his state's Republican party, Heller compared these disturbing allegations about the nominee's behavior to the mildest of post-meal inconveniences. From the Nevada Independent:
“I’m really grateful for the White House, for the effort of President Trump and what he has done, and the excitement that we have,” he said. “We got a little hiccup here with the Kavanaugh nomination, we’ll get through this and we’ll get off to the races,” he said.
Here is congressman Dana Rohrbacher (R-Russia) at a campaign event last weekend, opining that violence against women should not disqualify one from serving as a Supreme Court justice, as long as it occurred before one could legally purchase tobacco products.
George Orwell, he was so incredibly insightful and could see what’s going to happen. But that’s the challenge you’re going to have. At least I didn’t have to deal with that. Look at right now. This guy who’s going to be our Supreme Court justice, and he better be our Supreme Court judge, he’s a perfect candidate, and what do they say? ‘Well, in high school you did this.’ High school? Give me a break!
A comedic genius in the audience then shouts out an analogy comparing attempted rape to "cutting in the hamburger line," at which Rohrbacher laughs heartily.
Meanwhile, as Judiciary Committee chair Chuck Grassley announced that his investigators were following up on Ford's claims and pledged to do "everything that we can to make Dr. Ford comfortable coming before the committee," his top judicial confirmations staffer, Mike Davis, hopped on Twitter to indicate that Grassley actually doesn't give a shit about any of this. "Unfazed and determined," he wrote. "We will confirm Judge Kavanaugh."
He later deleted this charming missive and briefly locked his account before posting a follow-up, explaining that his reference was to Democrats' refusal to participate in what he ambitiously called the Committee's "thorough and fair investigation," and not, presumably, his utter disinterest in any investigation's results.
One man who has remained steadfast throughout this process is former Republican Senate candidate and noted upstanding citizen Roy Moore, who in an interview drew a direct line between the statutory rape charges that felled his candidacy and the allegations now swirling around Brett Kavanaugh. In an inspiring display of solidarity with the embattled Supreme Court nominee, Moore urged his almost-colleagues on Capitol Hill to "take a stand," learn from the past, and ignore credible evidence of a public figure's sexual misconduct.
They need to do what their conscience dictates. They know what's happening. It's so obvious that these tactics are used just days before a very important event...right before an election or a confirmation. I think the Republicans need to take a stand.
Should Chuck Grassley decide to allow anyone besides Ford and Kavanaugh to testify at Monday's hearing, this Roy Moore fellow sounds like he'd make a fantastic character witness.