In an emotional opening statement on Thursday, Supreme Court Justice nominee Brett Kavanaugh denied all the sexual assault allegations against him, criticized the role the media played in hurting his family, and fired off at Senate Democrats on the Judiciary Committee for taking part in a “calculated and orchestrated political hit.”
Here is an excerpt:
The behavior of several Democratic members of this committee at my hearing a few weeks ago was an embarrassment. But at least it was just a good old-fashioned attempt at Borking. Those efforts didn't work. When I did at least OK enough at the hearings that it looked like I might actually get confirmed. A new tactic was needed. Some of you were lying in wait and had it ready. This first allegation was held in secret for weeks, by a Democratic member of this committee and by staff, it would be needed - only if you couldn't take me out on the merits.
When it was needed this allegation was unleashed and publicly deployed over Dr. Ford's wishes. And then, then as no doubt was expected, if not planned, came a long series of false last minute smears designed to scare me and drive me out of the process before any hearing occurred. Crazy stuff – gangs, illegitimate children, fights on boats in Rhode Island. All nonsense reported breathlessly and often uncritically by the media. This has destroyed my family and my good name a good name built up through decades of very hard work and public service at the highest levels of the American government. This whole two week effort has been a calculated and orchestrated political hit fueled with apparent pent up anger about President Trump and the 2016 election.
Fear that has been unfairly stoked about my judicial record, revenge on behalf of the Clintons and millions of dollars in money from outside Left-wing opposition groups. This is a circus. The consequences will extend long past my nomination. The consequences will be with us for decades. This grotesque and coordinated character assassination will dissuade competent and good people of all political persuasions from serving our country. And as we all know in the United States political system of the early 2000s. What goes around comes around.
I am an optimistic guy. I always try to be on the sunrise side of the mountain to be optimistic about the day that is coming. But today I have to say that I fear for the future. Last time I was here I told this committee that a federal judge must be independent, not swayed by public or political pressure. I said I was such a judge and I am I will not be intimidated into withdrawing from this process. You've tried hard you've given it your all. No one can question your effort. But you're coordinated and well-funded effort to destroy my good name and destroy my family will not drive me out.
The vile threats of violence against my family will not drive me out. You may defeat me in the final vote, but you'll never get me to quit. Never.