Facebook’s vice president of public policy, Joel Kaplan, hosted a gathering on Saturday night in Washington, D.C., to celebrate Brett Kavanaugh’s controversial nomination to the Supreme Court.
About 25 attendees showed up to Kaplan and Laura Cox Kaplan’s celebration, including Brett and Ashley Kavanaugh, as first reported by Politico.
Laura Cox Kaplan, lobbyist Ginger Loper and several other women who supported Kavanaugh organized the event.
That hasn’t stopped its employees from being outraged that a high-level employee backed a Supreme Court nominee who faced multiple sexual misconduct allegations.
Several outlets, including The New York Times, detailed internal backlash at Facebook over Joel Kaplan sitting behind Kavanaugh as he testified about Christine Blasey Ford’s allegation that he sexually assaulted her in high school.
Kaplan and Kavanaugh have reportedly been friends for years, but Facebook employees were still frustrated and felt that Kaplan’s support was a tacit show of approval from Facebook. They believed that it signaled that Kaplan believed Kavanaugh and discounted Ford’s testimony.
During a later Facebook-wide meeting, Kaplan said that he should have consulted his superiors at Facebook before attending the hearing. Facebook CEO Mark ZuckerbergMark Elliot ZuckerbergHillicon Valley — Facebook 'too late' curbing climate falsities Facebook draws lawmaker scrutiny over Instagram's impact on teens How social media fuels U.S. political polarization — what to do about it MORE and Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg attended the town hall, according to Axios, which was live-streamed to employees.
Kavanaugh’s Supreme Court nomination and subsequent confirmation on Saturday stoked heavy tensions across the country.