President Donald Trump weighed on the protests that marked Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh’s first day of confirmation hearings on Tuesday, tweeting it was a “despicable” display.
Just minutes into Tuesday’s Senate Judiciary Committee proceedings on Capitol Hill, the protests began.
One woman in the audience called out that Kavanaugh would “overturn” her child’s future as she held up a T-shirt with pictures of her daughter. Another yelled, “If you vote for Brett Kavanagh, we will replace you.”
Others screamed out in high pitched protests difficult to comprehend.
Protesters were escorted out of Brett Kavanaugh's confirmation hearing just minutes after it began this morning. pic.twitter.com/w8WJqB7krG
— POLITICO (@politico) September 4, 2018
The scene became so volatile, Kavanaugh’s wife, Ashley, decided to take their two young daughters, Margaret, 13, and Liza, 10, out of the room.
The proceedings were not only disrupted by members of the public sitting in the audience, but also by the Democrat senators on the Judiciary Committee.
The Washington Times reported that Democrats interrupted the proceedings 44 times during the first hour.
New Jersey Democrat Cory Booker was one of the most vocal Democrats to speak — and in his opening statement, he addressed Kavanaugh directly.
“It seems so clear that in your courts, the same folks seem to win over and over again: The powerful, the privileged, big corporations, special interests,” Booker said, according to NorthJersey.com.
“And over and over again. the folks that lose are … working folks, consumers, women, immigrants, minorities, the disadvantaged, the poor.”
Booker’s statement, however biting, was at least part of the proceedings.
However, the other protests also appeared to be part of a plan.
MSNBC correspondent Kasie Hunt reported that Democrats “plotted (a) coordinated protest strategy over the holiday weekend” in a conference call led by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer.
Democrats plotted coordinated protest strategy over the holiday weekend and all agreed to disrupt and protest the hearing, sources tell me and @frankthorp
Dem leader @chuckschumer led a phone call and committee members are executing now
— Kasie Hunt (@kasie) September 4, 2018
“All agreed to disrupt and protest the hearing,” Hunt tweeted.
Trump responded on Twitter, writing, “The Brett Kavanaugh hearings for the future Justice of the Supreme Court are truly a display of how mean, angry, and despicable the other side is.”
The Brett Kavanaugh hearings for the future Justice of the Supreme Court are truly a display of how mean, angry, and despicable the other side is. They will say anything, and are only….
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 4, 2018
In a follow-up tweet, he added: “They will say anything, and are only looking to inflict pain and embarrassment to one of the most highly renowned jurists to ever appear before Congress. So sad to see!”
After hours of opening statements dominated by protesters and Democrat senators attacking Kavanaugh, the tenor of the hearings appeared to change when former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice addressed the committee to formerly introduce the nominee. The two served together in the George W. Bush administration.
— Fox News (@FoxNews) September 4, 2018
Rice vouched for Kavanaugh’s fundamental fairness, noting her assessment is based on her journey from a child in segregated Birmingham, Alabama, to secretary of state.
“The Supreme Court is a crucial guardian both of our Constitution and of our democracy,” she said. “That is why I am so honored to introduce Brett Kavanaugh for these hearings.”
Kavanaugh and his wife, also a George W. Bush White House alum, appeared moved to tears by Rice’s words of support.
“He will be an outstanding Supreme Court justice,” Rice stated. “His intellect is unquestioned. His judgement is highly regarded, and I can personally attest to his character and integrity as a colleague.
“Brett Kavanaugh will thoroughly and faithfully uphold the trust that is our heritage, the Constitution of the United States of America.”
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