Thursday, September 27, 2018

Cowardly Republicans Grant a False Premise

Angelo Codevilla summarizes the events precisely:

The logic of a premise will drag you to its conclusion. When Senate Republicans accepted the premise that Christine Blasey Ford’s accusation of sexual assault against Brett Kavanaugh was a legitimate personal complaint rather than a political maneuver orchestrated by the Democratic Party, they placed themselves in the grips of a logic leading them through bargaining about how to accommodate her as he was dogged by a nationwide campaign of personal and political vilification.
The logic’s next step is likely to come Thursday, when Ford does not show at the Judiciary Committee hearing amidst renewed Democratic and media accusations of a litany of sins by now all too familiar.
Republicans will be left with the same option they had when the Democrats first brought up their last-minute landmine—to press ahead with confirmation. But by accepting a premise they knew was false, they energized the Democrats’ constituencies and dispirited their own.
They embarrassed themselves by volunteering to be played for suckers, as well as  looking callous toward  victims of sexual assault. Brilliant.
The substance, the manner, and the circumstances of Ford’s accusation shouted that it is a hoax—that the Democrats had conjured a political bludgeon of last resort, and never intended for Ford to testify. But the Republicans, being pusillanimous, refused to acknowledge the reality of what they were getting into.
The accusation’s substance advertised its unseriousness. The total lack of specifics about the time and place of the alleged assault, of anything that might be an investigation’s staring place, was red flag enough. But the contradiction between the original report to a therapist about four men in the room—and nothing about Kavanaugh—and the subsequent account of two, Kavanaugh and Mark Judge, was as obvious to the Democrats making the charge as to the Republicans. When Judge denied any knowledge of the alleged party, followed by all others who Ford named as having knowledge of it, the Republicans had no reason to refrain from labeling the accusations the very definition of slander. No reason except cowardice.

Read the rest here.

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