It’s hard to believe, but Dr. Christine Blasey Ford’s name was first made public on Sunday, September 16.
It feels like years have passed, but it was only 19 days ago.
In prior scandals, the accused could depend on the scandal going away if they won the election or appointment. That is what happened with Clarence Thomas. News organizations retreated. Survivors were told they needed to move on.
If there’s anything the #MeToo movement has shown, it’s this, the era or retreats is now over. Chris Hayes had an amazing interview with Rebecca Traister about how our society constrains the anger women can and cannot express, and how that is changing in this moment.
Reporters will keep digging, more witnesses and evidence will come forward in the ensuing weeks. NBC released texts today (right) that suggest Kavanaugh was working to squash the Deborah Ramirez story before it broke. FOIA requests suggest there are e-mails and documents that shed light on Kavanaugh’s involvement in the torture memos and with the theft of documents from the Judiciary committee.
I hope Democrats keep up the fight and ensure Susan Collins’ shameful speech doesn’t silence Deborah Ramirez and Julie Swetnick’s stories. The Republicans succeeded in turning the narrative into a referendum on Ed Whalen’s conspiracy theory. They created a sham investigation with three objectives:
- Keep Kavanaugh from being questioned by the FBI
- Bury or ignore Deborah Ramirez and Julie Swetnick’s allegations
- Keep the results secret so they could spin the results into the Ed Whelan theory
They succeeded on all three fronts, and temporarily pulling the wool over Americans’ eyes.
But, they’ve misjudged the moment. Where we are right now, the truth will out. We are no longer in the media climate where journalists would keep Strom Thurmond’s secret for decades. Whatever secrets Kavanaugh is harboring will come out, before or shortly after November.
So that is the context in which Joe Manchin is making a decision to vote for Kavanaugh. It’s a mistake.
First, Lisa Murkowski provided the perfect cover for Manchin. He could have joined her and tied the Senate. Murkowski gave him, and Democrats a bi-partisan basis for a no vote. With Manchin voting yes, Republicans have bi-partisan cover as well.
Without Manchin, Kavanaugh would have 50 votes. Republicans would have to bring Daines’ back from Montana and they would need to bring Pence to the floor to break a tie. Neither of that now needs to happen.
Joe Manchin knows West Virginia better than I ever will. What I do know is that Democratic activists are unlikely to do much for Manchin now, and several organizations have already decided to exit his race. This is how activist greeted his explanation of the vote:
— ABC News (@ABC) October 5, 2018
I also know that Manchin shouldn’t expect anything from the Republicans. The entire party is enthralled by the criminal Trump family, and this is what Manchin can expect from Trump and his family:
A real profile in courage from Lyin’ liberal @JoeManchinWV. Waited until Kavanugh had enough votes secured before he announced his support. I bet he had another press release ready to go if Collins went the other way.
— Donald Trump Jr. (@DonaldJTrumpJr) October 5, 2018
Something I think about a lot is that the longest serving Republican speaker in American history turned out to be a child molester. And basically everyone who worked with him thought he was a great guy.
— Chris Hayes (@chrislhayes) October 5, 2018
This is a Creative Commons article. The original version of this article appeared here.