Lambda Legal Decries Kavanaugh Vote & Republican Manipulation of Confirmation Process

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October 6, 2018
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The United States Senate’s vote to confirm Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court is the culmination of a deeply flawed nomination process the likes of which we have never seen in this nation’s history. While profoundly frustrated and outraged, we are not surprised by this outcome, which is yet another example of the lengths to which this Republican-controlled Senate is prepared to go in order to pack the courts with ideological extremists who will promote the 'values' of the Trump-Pence administration.

In their haste to shift the Supreme Court to the far right, Senate Republicans abused their power by shielding this nominee’s record from public scrutiny, and by manipulating the process to ensure that deeply troubling questions about his character and integrity would be left unanswered. This deliberate campaign of concealment by Senate Republicans circumvented any meaningful public discussion about how Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation would undermine important protections for LGBTQ people, women, people of color, people living with disabilities or preexisting conditions, and workers. Yet, even without this evidence, Brett Kavanaugh revealed himself as a right-wing political operative completely lacking in judicial temperament. His confirmation will undermine the legitimacy of the Supreme Court for as long as he serves. 

Senator Collins, who presented the closing argument on behalf of Senator McConnell and GOP leadership, has forever tarnished her legacy as a moderate, independent thinker. Her full-throated endorsement of Brett Kavanaugh, coupled with her attacks on those who raised concerns about his nomination, were the defensive words of a partisan apologist, and not someone who takes reproductive freedom, LGBTQ rights or affordable health care seriously. Her insistence that Brett Kavanaugh poses no threat to the marriage equality rights secured by Obergefell, the right to abortion guaranteed by Roe v. Wade, or the healthcare access advanced by the Affordable Care Act does not pass the laugh test, and cannot be logically reconciled with the millions of dollars spent in support of Kavanaugh’s nomination by people openly committed to gutting those protections. Furthermore, her insulting response to the serious and credible allegations of sexual assault and misconduct by Dr. Ford and others, which were not fully investigated, was also startling. Every Senator who joined Senator Collins in voting for Brett Kavanaugh is responsible for the cloud of illegitimacy that will rest over the Supreme Court, as well as the United States Senate, for years to come.

Lambda Legal knows that our work will be harder now, but we are more committed than ever to protecting LGBTQ people and everyone living with HIV. The communities that we serve are counting on us and we will never quit fighting to protect them and their families.