A sad spectacle

It was supposed to be a simple matter of confirming a Supreme Court nominee following a series of hearings where his opinion on key legal issues would be questioned.

He would have been asked to give his opinion on Roe vs Wade and if he believed a sitting president could be charged in court. No one would have questioned his conservative leanings because conservative is precisely what he always has been.

It would have been a case of what you see is what you get.

In the end, Judge Brett Kavanaugh would have passed what should have been a relatively easy gauntlet, with the Republicans using their numbers to outvote the Democrats if the latter opted to oppose his nomination.

This is not what happened. Instead, there was an eerie feeling of déjà vu. The SC nominee was accused of committing an act while still a high school student that raises the question of whether he is qualified to be an SC justice.

Indeed, this had happened before, or at least something quite similar to it. It happened in 1991 when Anita Hill testified that she had been sexually harassed by then SC nominee Judge Clarence Thomas mere days before he was to be confirmed.

That incident that supposedly took place at a party was serious, but one that will be difficult to prove. Mrs. Christine Blasey Ford has stated that Kavanaugh had attempted to rape her during a party all those years ago. For his part, he denied that this ever happened. Not then, nor any other time, Kavanaugh angrily insisted when the news first broke.

The general belief is that an incident that happened nearly four decades ago will raise serious concerns on the character of Kavanaugh, but in the end he would still be confirmed.

He will be getting the benefit of the doubt for the simple reason that what supposedly took place happened very quickly and even the victim says she does not remember exactly when or where the assault took place. Also, he was allegedly very drunk at that time, and she may or may not have been likewise inebriated.

It has been pointed out that what is likely to happen will just be another case of he said, she said.

But at least the confirmation that was scheduled to take place Thursday this week will not push through. Kavanaugh’s appointment to the SC will not be an easy ride. This, after the Senate justice committee decided to hear both sides and attempt to ferret out the truth.

Kavanaugh and Ford will face each other on Monday next week, and everyone expects the confrontation to be ugly. But it will be necessary. And unless something ultra-dramatic occurs such as Kavanaugh breaking down and admitting that the assault did happen or Ford giving contradictory testimony thereby ruining her credibility, the end result will be as expected.

What happened with Anita Hill and Clarence Thomas will be repeated. Questions will linger over the moral character of Kavanaugh but he will eventually become a Supreme Court justice for life. Sooner or later, next week’s sad spectacle will be forgotten.

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