Jeff Flake: I still don't know if I believed Kavanaugh (or Ford)

Sen. Jeff Flake appeared on the View today and said he wasn’t sure if he believed Dr. Christine Blasey Ford or Judge Brett Kavanaugh, an answer that didn’t sit well with most of the show’s hosts.

Of course, all of the ladies on the show approved of Flake’s decision to demand an FBI investigation after he was confronted in an elevator by a couple of activists. But the conversation turned when Joy Behar asked if the FBI investigation merely gave Flake “cover” to vote for Kavanaugh. Flake pushed back a bit, noting that the Anita Hill FBI investigation only took four days. He added that the Kavanaugh investigation was, “thorough for the scope that it was” and claimed it was also “illuminating” though he wouldn’t say how exactly.

Co-host Sunny Hostin then asked, “Did you believe Dr. Blasey Ford’s testimony under oath before the committee?”

“She was very compelling. He was very persuasive,” Flake said.

Behar asked why Flake wanted to stick with Kavanaugh if there was any doubt about him. Flake said it would set a dangerous precedent if a “mere allegation” was enough to disqualify someone.

“So you didn’t believe her,” Hostin said.

“I don’t know,” Flake replied adding, “I don’t know if I believed him either.”

Flake then pointed out that he was one of just a few Senators who didn’t announce how they planned to vote before Dr. Ford testified. I don’t want to defend Flake being Flake but he does have a point here. None of the View’s hosts cared about all the Democrats who took Dr. Ford’s side before they’d even heard her story in person. There is no pushback on them to justify their votes. No one says, “So you didn’t believe him?” The pressure is entirely one-sided, i.e. the GOP has to justify their votes in light of Dr. Ford’s testimony but Democrats don’t have to justify their votes in light of Kavanaugh’s testimony and record.

At the end, of this exchange, Whoopi Goldberg again asks why the GOP decided to stick with Kavanaugh if there were questions about him regarding his teenage behavior, including his drinking. Flake replied that Kavanaugh had a perfect record for 12 years on the DC Circuit Court. His point, though he didn’t quite state it this way, was that maybe the sudden flurry of allegations had something to do with the partisan circus atmosphere. And if that’s the case, why would we expect the treatment of any replacement nominee to be any different.

Dare I say it? Flake is right about this. It was always easy for Dems to say ‘We have a problem with this guy but if you nominate someone else, it’ll be fine.’ That was always a lie. If Trump had nominated someone else they’d have repeated the process all over again with the new nominee. The goal was to block the nomination of a conservative, any conservative. And if you don’t believe that, just wait and see how Democrats behave if Trump gets a third appointment to the court.