Ayanna Pressley brings impeachment resolution against Kavanaugh
Published 6:26 PM EDT Sep 17, 2019
WASHINGTON – Rep. Ayanna Pressley, D-Mass., introduced an impeachment resolution against Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh after a new report of alleged sexual misconduct.
“I believe Christine Blasey Ford. I believe Deborah Ramirez. It is our responsibility to collectively affirm the dignity and humanity of survivors,” she said in a statement to Boston public radio station WBUR.
Pressley referred to the two women who accused Kavanaugh of sexual misconduct during his contentious nomination process last October.
“Sexual predators do not deserve a seat on the nation’s highest court, and Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation process set a dangerous precedent,” Pressley told WBUR. “We must demand justice for survivors and hold Kavanaugh accountable for his actions.”
The two-page resolution asks the House Judiciary Committee to investigate the possibility of impeachment.
Democratic leadership seems to have little appetite for a fight over impeachment, and the resolution is unlikely to go anywhere.
Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., the No. 2 Senate Democrat, told Politico on Monday, “We’ve got to get beyond this ‘impeachment is the answer to every problem.’ It’s not realistic.
“If that’s how we are identified in Congress, as the impeachment Congress, we run the risk that people will feel we’re ignoring the issues that mean a lot to them as families,” he continued.
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An essay published in The New York Times on Sept. 14, adapted from a forthcoming book about Kavanaugh, included reporting about a newly surfaced misconduct allegation, as well as potential corroborating evidence for another allegation. The report sparked calls among Democrats for the justice’s impeachment and investigation.
The New York Times added an editor’s note to the article about information on the allegation that Kavanaugh’s “friends pushed his penis into the hand of a female student” that had been left out of the article originally. “The book reports that the female student declined to be interviewed and friends say that she does not recall the incident,” the Times said.
Kavanaugh has denied the previously reported allegation and declined to be interviewed by the Times about the new allegation.
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Any attempt to impeach Kavanaugh is unlikely to succeed in the Republican-controlled Senate. Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., called impeachment a “laughable suggestion” Monday. Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., vowed that Kavanaugh will not be impeached “over these scurrilous accusations.”
Only once has a Supreme Court justice been impeached. Samuel Chase, a Federalist justice appointed by President George Washington, was impeached by a Democratic-Republican House in 1804 for “arbitrary, oppressive, and unjust” decisions on the court.
The Senate declined to remove him from office.
Contributing: Richard Wolf