by Karl Notturno
Over the past couple of weeks, we have seen Democrats and the media execute a strategy on which they have become increasingly reliant. They are currently using this strategy in an attempt to delay and destroy Judge Brett Kavanaugh. Unfortunately, some Republicans—namely Senator Jeff Flake—do not understand this strategy and continue playing into Democrats’ hands.
Herewith is a brief primer to help confused Republicans like Flake understand how they’re being played and help them grow a spine.
Make a damning accusation that is difficult to prove but nearly impossible to disprove.
A charge of attempted rape is devastating—even when it is alleged to have occurred nearly four decades ago. It is hard enough to prove a negative, let alone prove one 36 years after the fact. Memories fade and warp and the facts get increasingly difficult to pin down. Few prosecutors would touch a decades-old case and many states (not including Maryland) have statutes of limitations to encourage victims to step forward while memories are still relatively fresh. No jury would convict Kavanaugh based on the evidence we have heard and no responsible prosecutor would take a case like this to trial.
Shift the burden of proof onto the defender by arguing that “innocent until proven guilty” only applies in a courtroom.
After all, they argue, this is a job interview, not a trial. We certainly do not want a Supreme Court justice with a cloud of sexual assault allegations hanging over him. On its face, the line may seem compelling. But without some standard by which to judge the credibility of the charges, it is unclear what level of certainty allegations need to have before they disqualify nominees from a certain job. If every uncorroborated allegation were disqualifying, a lot of innocent people would have their lives ruined very quickly.
Demand an investigation based on scant evidence and use the fact that the defender isn’t also calling for an investigation as evidence of guilt.
“If Judge Kavanaugh has nothing to hide, why won’t he submit to an investigation? . . . Oh, he did? Are you sure?. . . I’m questioning him right now? Oh, OK then. But if Judge Kavanaugh has nothing to hide, why won’t he submit to an FBI investigation? Oh, he’s willing to do that, too?. . . But why isn’t he out front calling for the FBI to investigate an allegation he is repeatedly denying and that has already ruined his life?”
If we investigated every single allegation that someone made about things that happened decades ago, we would have an open investigation into whether or not Ted Cruz’s father had a role in John F. Kennedy’s assassination.
Given that Kavanaugh’s first accuser, Christine Blasey Ford, has given us relatively few details about the event, Democrats will simply slot any details that the FBI came up with into the story. And since it is virtually impossible to prove a negative, especially in the face of such vague allegations, it is unlikely that the FBI report would exonerate Kavanaugh categorically. After all, good old Joe Biden told us the worth of FBI report in 1991. It’s unlikely that the FBI has changed that much.
Why on Earth would an innocent man want to prolong the pain that he and his family have already gone through, given that there is no chance that the investigation could fully clear his name?
Trick spineless or gullible Republicans into thinking that the investigation will be focused and that Democrats will be satisfied by the results.
Remember how quickly the special counsel Mueller’s investigation wrapped up? Oh, wait . . .
Democrats will find some flaky flake, get some protesters to yell at him in an elevator, and convince him that an FBI investigation will change something. No matter how much exculpatory evidence comes forward, they won’t be satisfied. We shouldn’t be surprised if they drop the sexual assault charge entirely if they think they have caught him in an inconsistency, no matter how small. Attempted rape could turn into perjury, the same way that collusion turned into obstruction. And then we’ll need another FBI investigation into that. It could go on forever, no matter what Dianne Feinstein told Flake.
Throw out unsubstantiated claims that will then need to be investigated, drawing the process out further.
As the investigation slogs on, more and more unsubstantiated claims will emerge. No matter how incredible or ridiculous the accusations, they will continue amplifying the uproar against Kavanaugh and will convince inattentive Democrats that he is the devil incarnate. Protesters, high on frenzied and unsubstantiated allegations, will target Republicans. Let’s hope those interactions don’t turn violent.
Continue widening the scope of the investigation and seize on any potentially embarrassing revelations, even if they are not related to the initial allegation.
If Republicans like Jeff Flake continue giving Democrats the inch they demand of him, they will take light-years. Every single joke that Kavanaugh made 36 years ago will be torn apart and examined and every single embarrassing detail will be blasted through the media, over and over again. Michael Avenatti is already asking about whether or not Judge Kavanaugh had oral sex in high school. At this point, we might have senators arguing over when Kavanaugh got his first blowjob.
Truth is, we saw a remarkable display on Thursday. Senate Republicans seemed to have grown a spine. For all the gaslighting in the media and the constant assertion that liberals are victims, we saw a clear demonstration of the disgusting and Orwellian tactics of the Democrats. Lindsey Graham had one of his finest moments in the U.S. Senate. He could no longer contain his revulsion.
Flake fell for the same tactics that the Democrats have been using for years. They are happy to pretend to be reasonable, but ultimately they are willing to sacrifice anything or anyone to stay in power and to get their way. If we continue capitulating, we will lose everything.
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Karl Notturno is a Mount Vernon Fellow of the Center for American Greatness in addition to being an entrepreneur, musician, and writer. He recently graduated from Yale University with degrees in philosophy and history. He can be found on Twitter @karlnotturno.