Josh Hawley Responds After Claire McCaskill Says She’ll Vote ‘No’ on Brett Kavanaugh

Zachary Stieber
By Zachary Stieber
September 20, 2018Politics

Josh Hawley has responded after Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.) announced she’ll vote against Brett Kavanaugh in his nomination for the Supreme Court.

Hawley said in an interview on Hugh Hewitt’s radio show on Sept. 19, that “people are very, very upset by what they see as an ambush” on Kavanaugh, referring to how the sexual assault allegation against the judge didn’t emerge until after the public hearings were over, reported Politico.

Noting that McCaskill also opposed Trump’s first Supreme Court nominee, Neil Gorsuch, Hawley added: “Nobody is surprised. Claire McCaskill is now 0 for 6 on Supreme Court nominees since she started running for the Senate 12 long years ago.”

“She has sided with Chuck Schumer every single time—for liberals and against Missouri,” he said.

President Donald Trump won Missouri in the 2016 presidential election and McCaskill faces a tough challenge in November in her bid for re-election from Hawley, a former law clerk for Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts.

The race has been tight the entire year, with neither contender getting a lead of more than four points in a single poll, according to RealClearPolitics. Recent polls have Hawley slightly in the lead, by less than a full percentage point.

Echoing a number of commentators, Jessie Jane Duff, a retired U.S. Marine and now a senior fellow for the London Center for Policy Research, said that McCaskill won’t get re-elected if she votes against Kavanaugh.

“If Claire won’t vote yes to Confirm Kavanaugh, Missouri won’t vote for Claire in November,” Duff said via Twitter.

McCaskill Announces Opposition

McCaskill said in a statement on Wednesday, Sept. 19 that her decision rested on Kavanaugh’s thinking on “several key issues,” principally so-called dark money.

“He has revealed his bias against limits on campaign donations which places him completely out of the mainstream of this nation,” she said.

“He wrote, ‘And I have heard very few people say that limits on contributions to candidates are unconstitutional although I for one tend to think those limits have some constitutional problems.’ Judge Kavanaugh will give free rein to anonymous donors and foreign governments through their citizens to spend money to interfere and influence our elections with so-called ‘issue ads.’”

McCaskill said the sexual assault allegation against Kavanaugh is troubling but declared: “My decision is not based on these allegations.”

McCaskill is the first of six undecided Senate Democrats to announce a decision.

The others are Doug Jones of Alabama, Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota, Joe Manchin of West Virginia, Joe Donnelly of Indiana, and Jon Tester of Montana, according to Politico.

Kavanaugh could still be confirmed even if all Democrats oppose him and he receives support from 50 of the 51 Senate Republicans.


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