See below for statements by Virginia politicians – starting with Senators Tim Kaine and Mark Warner, adding others as I see them – on Trump’s nomination of hard-right ideologue Brett Kavanaugh to the U.S. Supreme Court. I expect every Democrat – and any Republican who cares about women’s reproductive freedom, civil liberties, civil rights, LGBT equality, the environment, our democracy, separation of church and state, etc, etc. – in the U.S. Senate to oppose this appalling nominee. By the way, this process was totally corrupt and corrupted, from the refusal of Mitch McConnell to even CONSIDER President Barack Obama’s nomination of Merrick Garland, to the fact that there’s actually a freaking LIST of right-wing judges, put together by “right-wing fringe ideologues” (as U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal correctly calls them) at the Federalist Society and Heritage Foundation. Just absolutely disgraceful in every way. The question now is whether there’s even a single Republican in the U.S. Senate with any integrity and backbone. Sadly, I doubt there is.
KAINE STATEMENT ON THE NOMINATION OF JUDGE BRETT KAVANAUGH TO THE SUPREME COURT
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Tim Kaine released the following statement on President Trump’s nomination of Judge Brett Kavanaugh to serve on the Supreme Court:
“A Supreme Court nomination is the most consequential appointment that the Senate ever considers. As I have with nominees in the past, I will carefully review Judge Kavanaugh’s character, legal decisions, and writing to determine whether he should be confirmed to this crucial position. There are critical issues at stake, and four in particular I’ll be focusing on:
“Would Judge Kavanaugh respect rulings upholding the Affordable Care Act, which guarantees protections for Americans with preexisting conditions?
“As a longtime civil rights lawyer, I’m focused on whether Judge Kavanaugh would safeguard the civil rights of all Americans regardless of race, gender, religion, national origin, disability, or sexual orientation and ensure that all are protected from discrimination.
“Would Judge Kavanaugh protect women’s freedom to make their own reproductive health care decisions?
“And would Judge Kavanaugh be independent and willing to exercise appropriate checks against the Presidency, especially given this President’s alarming claims that he has the power to fire Special Counsel Mueller or pardon himself?
“I’m encouraging Virginians to send me feedback on what they’re looking for in a Supreme Court justice, and I won’t make a final decision until I have met one-on-one with Judge Kavanaugh and observed his performance in the Senate Judiciary Committee hearing. It could have catastrophic consequences if Leader McConnell rushes to confirm a nominee. There should not be a vote until the American public has a chance to speak in November.”
STATEMENT OF U.S. SEN. MARK R. WARNER
~ On the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to serve on the Supreme Court ~
WASHINGTON – U.S. Sen. Mark R. Warner (D-VA) released the following statement after President Trump nominated Brett Kavanaugh to serve on the Supreme Court:
“There is much at stake with President Trump’s nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to fill the vacancy created by Justice Kennedy’s retirement. The next Supreme Court justice will determine whether women will maintain their constitutional right to reproductive health care; whether we will continue to protect people with pre-existing conditions from discrimination; whether we are a country that lives by our values when it comes to voting rights, women’s rights, workers’ rights, and the rights of LGBT Americans. The stakes are made that much higher by an Administration that routinely violates longstanding norms and pushes ethical boundaries past the breaking point. We need a Supreme Court that can act as a check on the executive branch now more than ever.
“Time and time again, President Trump has said that he will only nominate candidates who will vote to undermine those rights and who will work to overturn Roe v. Wade. That simple fact, and that this nominee comes from a list put together by ultra-conservative groups who do not support these core values, give me grave concerns that Judge Kavanaugh is not the right pick to serve on our nation’s highest court.
“I plan to carefully examine Judge Kavanaugh’s record and judicial philosophy. I cannot and will not support a nominee who would take this country backwards by undermining our fundamental rights and American values.”
VA-10 Democratic Nominee Jennifer Wexton:
“This pick is unacceptable. Brett Kavanaugh is a hardline conservative who will not respect established precedent, threatening protections for workers, women’s reproductive health, and LGBT rights. We need the Senate to reject this nomination.”
Rep. Donald McEachin (D-VA04): “President Trump has made his selection for the Supreme Court. Mr. Brett Kavanaugh has made some very troubling statements in the past on a host of critical issues. As Americans we have a responsibility to stand for our civil liberties and our Constitution and to ensure that whoever sits on the Supreme Court will protect our freedoms and ensure all Americans have equal opportunity, justice and fairness. I have very serious concerns about Mr. Kavanaugh’s commitment to those values.”
Americans’ preexisting conditions coverage.
Limits on the president’s power, as Trump faces investigation.
That’s #WhatsAtStake with this Supreme Court pick.
Kavanaugh is more conservative than Gorsuch
— Rep. Don Beyer (@RepDonBeyer) July 10, 2018
Del. Mark Keam: “As a US Senate staffer, I crossed paths with Brett Kavanaugh when he worked for George W. Bush and also reviewed and opposed his nomination to DC Circuit. He was too far right for appellate court back then; he’s waaaaay too far right for the Supreme Court today. #SaveSCOTUS”
The nomination of Judge Brett Kavanaugh will threaten the lives of millions of Americans for decades to come and will morph our Supreme Court into a political arm of the right-wing Republican Party.
— Terry McAuliffe (@TerryMcAuliffe) July 10, 2018
VA-07 Democratic nominee Abigail Spanberger: “The President’s nomination of Judge Brett Kavanaugh is yet another step towards fundamentally changing the #SupremeCourt for an entire generation. Based on his prior statements and rulings, Kavanaugh’s confirmation would put choice, consumer protections, labor rights, the ACA, environmental protections, and campaign finance reform efforts all under threat.
In nominating Kavanaugh, the President is fulfilling his 2016 pledge to nominate anti-choice judges, but we cannot accept efforts by the executive branch to effectively direct policy through court nominations. I urge the Senate to stand up to these efforts to undermine our checks and balances, and oppose Kavanaugh’s nomination.”
And now the right wingnuts…starting with neo-Confederate Corey Stewart.
Tonight, President Trump took another bold step toward restoring constitutional govt by selecting Brett Kavanaugh for #SCOTUS.
I urge @timkaine to put politics aside & do what’s right for America & support the President’s excellent choice to replace Anthony Kennedy on the bench.
— Corey Stewart (@CoreyStewartVA) July 10, 2018
— Scott Taylor (@Scotttaylorva) July 10, 2018
Fantastic pick by @POTUS tonight! Thrilled to see the President nominate a judge who has a proven record of protecting our inalienable rights, upholding the rule of law, and adhering to the Constitution’s original intent. I hope to see the Senate swiftly confirm Judge Kavanaugh.
— Rep. Rob Wittman (@RobWittman) July 10, 2018
Idiocy from Rep. Dave Brat (Far-Right “R”, VA-07)
The Supreme Court serves as a check against the other branches of government. Judge Kavanaugh is the one of the most qualified individuals in the country to serve on the Supreme Court. He is a brilliant leader amongst his peers, a graduate of Yale Law School, and a distinguished lecturer at Harvard Law School. Of his 48 clerks, 39 have gone on to clerk at the Supreme Court. He has enjoyed a long, impressive career of public service, including clerking for Justice Kennedy, and his record demonstrates a commitment to impartiality and faithful adherence to the U.S. Constitution.
Moreover, he is an All-American family man who has deliberately surrounded himself with strong women — his wife, a majority number of female clerks, his daughters. He is an example in his community, active in his Church and servicing the needy. I commend the president for an excellent choice and look forward to his confirmation in the Senate.
Last night, with Judge Kavanaugh, the American people saw the heart and humility of the man I have known for 20 years, who is a man of great character, integrity, and professionalism who reveres the Constitution and the rule of law. #VA10 pic.twitter.com/WiTPtbfWhu
— Barbara Comstock (@RepComstock) July 10, 2018