Communication at its Worst with a Supreme Court Seat at Stake
Several hours went by as Judge Brett Kavanaugh and Dr. Christine Blasey Ford delivered their testimonies to the Senate Judiciary Committee. Both cried at times. Both presented a totally different story. Emotions also ran high amongst Democrats and Republicans who were asking questions and offering comment. And then there were the protestors in the hallway waiting to give politicians a piece of their mind post-testimony. It may have been the biggest spectacle in the history of US politics.
Dr. Ford began by retelling her account of the night she alleged to be sexually assaulted by Judge Kavanaugh. She was soft spoken, and accommodated every request with her best recollection.
Kavanaugh, who appeared stern, almost Trump-like in his posture and strong rhetoric, exclaimed his innocence to the world. His opening statements were loud. He was nearly yelling. “I’ve asked for a hearing ten days ago,” he said, “and now this gets sprung on me!” Kavanaugh seemingly shares the conviction of many Republicans.
It was reported that Democrats found out about the assault months ago, and administered a polygraph test to Dr. Ford in August only to hold onto the information until a couple weeks before Kavanaugh’s confirmation vote. Time and testimony will reveal that this is a truth or falsehood.
Republicans think that it was in order to elicit an FBI investigation which would consequently delay the vote until after the midterm elections. If they succeed in delaying the vote until November, it would give them the opportunity to possibly win the majority in the Senate, and the ability to deny Donald Trump’s nomination of Brett Kavanaugh.
Democrats deny any effort to delay and ascribe the call for an investigation to a need for more information about a serious allegation. Republicans face scrutiny for trying to rush the nominee through.
And this is a real need, given the fact that the supreme court is the highest court in the land. Republicans face scrutiny for trying to rush the nominee through. At the same time, Democrats are said to be prematurely praising a woman accuser before the legitimacy of her claim is established.
Both sides are frantically trying to get their way. Reason and persuasion have taken the back seat. The only way to reconcile is to disqualify competing views entirely. It seems to be how politics work lately. But its ineffective and tumultuous.
The day after the hearings, the Senate Judiciary Committee met once more; this time to either approve or disapprove Kavanaugh as a candidate. Ultimately, he was approved but it wasn’t that simple. Republican Senator Jeff Flake proposed that the committee allow a one-week investigation into the accusations. His stated reason: to prove that the American Government is capable of cooperation. Refreshing. And many think the change was brought on by an elevator encounter with two women protestors who had also been sexually assaulted in their lifetime.
The motion passed. And the drama continues – as the Supreme Court resumes with only eight Supreme Court Justices. So, we will have to wait until next week to find out what the investigation uncovers.
And regardless of what it does uncover, reputations and families have been forever damaged with words.
We can laugh for a moment with a parody from Saturday Night Live, but this serious issue will be forever etched in our consciousness.