Democratic Senator Cory Booker admitted in a press conference on Tuesday that his belief that Brett Kavanaugh should not be confirmed to the Supreme Court has nothing to do with whether he is "innocent or guilty." The very fact that his name has been sullied by uncorroborated allegations and that he displayed anger at being accused without evidence and pushed back against the politically-motivated handling of the allegations by Democrat senators, Booker argued, "ultimately" disqualifies Kavanaugh from a lifetime appointment to the "sacred institution."
With the FBI investigation close to wrapping up and most expecting that it will confirm what has already been publicly revealed in sworn statements to the Senate — that the named witnesses by Ford all either deny any knowledge of the alleged incident or directly refute it — the New Jersey senator said that, in the end, it doesn't matter if Kavanaugh is innocent or guilty, just that his "credibility has been challenged" enough by supposed "intimates" of Kavanaugh from high school — despite the dozens of Kavanaugh's female friends from that period who have publicly vouched for his good character. The other disqualifier, according to Booker, is that in the highly emotional and politicized hearing, Kavanaugh displayed a "temperament" and used "language" that "shocked" Democrats.
"[U]ltimately, not whether he's innocent or guilty, this is not a trial," said Booker, "but ultimately have enough questions been raised that we should not move on to another candidate ... [T]he people who are on the Supreme Court should preserve the integrity of the court and be beyond the reproach of these difficult partisan times."
In other words, allegations, regardless of the absence of evidence, and strongly defending one's name are enough to disqualify a Supreme Court candidate in Booker's view. Full transcript and video below:
My hope is beyond the vicious partisan rancor that is going on, beyond the accusations, we don't lose sight of what this moral moment is about in this country, and ultimately ask ourselves the question: Is this the right person to sit on the highest court in the land for a lifetime appointment — when their credibility has been challenged by intimates, people that knew the candidate well as a classmate, when his temperament has been revealed in an emotional moment where he used language that frankly shocked a lot of us? And then ultimately, not whether he's innocent or guilty, this is not a trial, but ultimately have enough questions been raised that we should not move on to another candidate in that long list put together by the Heritage Foundation and the Federalist Society? Move on to another candidate because ultimately the Supreme Court is not an entitlement. Just because you went to Yale or were president of your class doesn't entitle you to the Supreme Court. This is a sacred institution, and the people who should be on it — whether you agree with their political or judicial philosophy at all — the people who are on the Supreme Court should preserve the integrity of the court and be beyond the reproach of these difficult partisan times.