Would a Democratic majority impeach Brett Kavanaugh?
— Texas Tribune (@TexasTribune) September 29, 2018
Democratic minority leader Nancy Pelosi affirmed that the House Democratic caucus is ready to move forward with impeaching controversial Supreme Court nominee and alleged sexual assaulter and rapist Brett Kavanaugh should the Democrats retake the majority after the 2018 midterm elections.
Pelosi’s support for such a move is conditional on one thing, however, the truth or falsity of Kavanaugh’s under oath statements before the Senate Judiciary Committee and his responses to investigators with the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
During a question-and-answer session at the historic Paramount Theatre in Austin, Texas during the Texas Tribune’s eighth annual Texas Tribune Festival, Pelosi was given the following fact pattern by CBS national correspondent and event moderator Alex Wagner. She asked, “Do you think the Democratic majority would be open to impeaching Brett Kavanaugh?”
Pelosi filibustered a bit before answering:
I will say this, if Judge Kavanaugh–see, I’m being real respectful and presidential, Judge Kavanaugh–if he is not telling the truth to Congress, or to the FBI, then he’s not fit, not only to be on the Supreme Court, but to be on the court that he’s on right now.
Applause followed Pelosi’s quick and conditional answer.
The minority leader’s comments track with what other national Democrats–congressional and otherwise–have been saying publicly. Or, in some cases, at least to the media.
A Friday article by Mike Allen in Axios quoted an anonymous but apparently “well-known” Democratic strategist as saying that impeachment is all but certainly to become a top 2020 campaign issue for Democratic Party contenders, noting, the “only question is who calls for it first.”
Brian Fallon, the former Hillary Clinton 2016 campaign spokesperson and Obama administration Justice Department alum, tweeted, “If Senate GOP ignores Dr. Blasey Ford and tries to muscle an attempted rapist onto the Supreme Court…They will pay dearly this November…Kavanaugh will not serve for life.”
Fallon currently oversees the liberal-leaning judicial advocacy group Demand Justice, which is currently running advertisements which liken Kavanaugh to President Donald Trump and disgraced former GOP Senate candidate Roy Moore–on the basis that all three men have been accused of sexual assault by multiple women.
During a recent Fox News interview, Democratic Representative Eric Swalwell of California sounded a bit more of a cautious tone–essentially arguing that impeachment was an ugly and last resort:
If the Republicans rush through a nominee where you have unanswered sexual assault allegations, I can promise you that Democratic senators will be interested in going and looking at those allegations, and if Judge Kavanaugh lied under oath, you could see a judicial impeachment, and that’s not good for anybody, so we should try and avoid that.
Democratic Representative Ted Lieu took things one step further–extending the logic of the myriad allegations of sexual assault and perfidy against Kavanaugh. Not only should he be denied a seat on the Supreme Court, he should also be removed from the D.C. Circuit Court on which he currently sits, according to Lieu.
The California Democrat noted, “Based on the numerous allegations of sexual assault against Judge Brett Kavanaugh, including these new criminal allegations by Julie Swetnick, the [House Judiciary Committee] must immediately start an investigation into Judge Kavanaugh to see if he should be impeached.”
[image via Michael Reynolds-Pool/Getty Images]