Nothing would do more to motivate grassroots Republican voters to show up at the polls on Nov. 6 than watching Kavanaugh’s nomination collapse less than a month before the vote, with the prospect of Republicans losing their chance to name a staunchly conservative successor to Justice Anthony Kennedy possibly hanging in the balance.
The reverse is true as well. Democratic turnout is likely to be high regardless. But would it likely be higher just after the Dems have helped to sink a Republican nominee to the high court — or after the Republicans forced him through despite the miasma of accusations swirling around him and in the wake his viciously partisan blast against the Democrats during last week’s appearance before the judiciary committee?
The answer is obvious. If Kavanaugh takes a seat on the court just before the midterms, the Republican base will be mollified, but the Democratic base will be furious — and that fury will likely translate into a greater margin of victory at the ballot box.