GOP senator: If Kavanaugh wasn't angry during testimony, 'people would be very suspicious'

GOP senator: If Kavanaugh wasn't angry during testimony, 'people would be very suspicious'
© Greg Nash

Sen. Lamar AlexanderAndrew (Lamar) Lamar AlexanderThe Hill's Morning Report - How will Trump be received in Dayton and El Paso? McConnell faces pressure to bring Senate back for gun legislation Criminal justice reform should extend to student financial aid MORE (R-Tenn.) said Sunday that he thinks Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh's recent op-ed in The Wall Street Journal was enough to explain his temperament during testimony in front of the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Alexander, appearing on NBC's "Meet the Press," added that he believes people would have been "very suspicious" if Kavanaugh hadn't forcefully defended himself against sexual misconduct allegations.


Kavanaugh was criticized by some, including former Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens, for his testimony during the hearing in front of the Senate Judiciary Committee. Kavanaugh became visibly angry during his testimony and accused Democrats of coordinating an attack on him. 

Kavanaugh last week penned an op-ed in The Wall Street Journal defending his "emotional" testimony, saying he "may have been too emotional at times."

"Meet the Press" host Chuck Todd on Sunday asked Alexander if that op-ed was enough of a defense for Kavanaugh or if he needed to do more to explain his testimony.

“No, I think that’s enough. If you had a group of people deliberately trying to destroy your reputation with accusations that you know aren’t true, and every rumor that comes up about you is the most awful kind of accusation, you’re not going to sit there calmly and take that," Alexander said.

"You’re going to defend yourself against people deliberately trying to damage and destroy you. And I think that’s what he did, and I think the fact that he did that is the reason he’s on the court. I think if he just sat there and taken it, that people would be very suspicious," he continued.

Kavanaugh was sworn in Saturday as a Supreme Court justice after a 50-48 vote in the Senate in favor of his confirmation.