ACLU breaks its own policy, comes out against Kavanaugh nomination

Anna Moneymaker

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) announced Saturday that it has decided to break with its own policy and come out in opposition to Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination to the Supreme Court in light of the sexual assault allegations being leveled against him.

The ACLU announced in a statement that the testimony on Thursday of Christine Blasey Ford, the first woman to accuse him of sexual assault, before the Senate Judiciary Committee has led to an “exception” in policy. 

“As a matter of organizational policy, the ACLU does not support or oppose candidates for political or judicial office,” the statement said. “In this instance, the national board held an extraordinary meeting, and has chosen to make an exception to that policy.”

{mosads}ACLU President Susan Herman said in the statement that the board of directors was “deeply concerned” by the allegations presented against Kavanaugh from Ford and two other women, Deborah Ramirez and Julie Swetnick.

The national board of directors passed a resolution opposing Kavanaugh’s nomination to the Supreme Court.

“There are credible allegations that Judge Kavanaugh has engaged in serious misconduct that have not been adequately investigated by the Senate,” the resolution states. “Dr. Christine Blasey Ford’s credible testimony, subsequent allegations of sexual misconduct, the inadequate investigation, and Judge Kavanaugh’s testimony at the hearing lead us to doubt Judge Kavanaugh’s fitness to serve as an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court.”

The board wrote that it did not make the decision “lightly.”

“We cannot remain silent under these extraordinary circumstances about a lifetime appointment to the highest court of the land,” the resolution continues. “The standard for such an appointment should be high, and the burden is on the nominee. That burden is not met as long as there are unresolved questions regarding the credible allegations of sexual assault.”  

This is the fourth time in the ACLU’s 98-year history that the board of directors has voted to oppose a Supreme Court nominee.

Herman said in a statement that the nonpartisan organization does not oppose Kavanaugh’s potential votes if he were to be appointed to the high court, “we oppose him in light of the credible allegations of sexual assault against him,” she wrote.

Ford, in a stirring testimony, detailed to the Senate Judiciary Committee how Kavanaugh allegedly assaulted her at a house party in 1982 when the two were high school students. Kavanaugh vehemently denied the allegations in a subsequent hearing. 

Senate Republicans agreed to a one-week delay on Kavanaugh’s nomination, pending a weeklong investigation into the allegations by the FBI. President Trump later on Friday asked the FBI to conduct an investigation.

Tags ACLU American Civil Liberties Union Brett Kavanaugh Christine Blasey Ford Donald Trump Supreme Court
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