Sac State political clubs weigh in on accusations against Kavanaugh

Accusations of sexual assault and misconduct continue to increase against Brett Kavanaugh

Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh's photo used on his biography page for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. Kavanaugh is facing growing accusations of sexual assault and harassment.

U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit - CC0

Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh’s photo used on his biography page for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. Kavanaugh is facing growing accusations of sexual assault and harassment.

Cory Jaynes, news editor

As the Senate Judiciary Committee began to hear testimony from Christine Blasey Ford on her accusations against Brett Kavanaugh, Sac State’s political clubs had their own views on the process.

Ford, a professor at Palo Alto University, told the Washington Post that Kavanaugh, now a nominee for the Supreme Court, and a friend, Mark Judge, forced her into a room during a party in Montgomery County, Maryland in the early 1980s.

According to Ford’s testimony to the Judiciary Committee on Thursday, Kavanaugh pinned her to a bed and started to remove her clothing when Judge jumped on top of the bed repeatedly and she was able to break free.

Ford’s story started to leak out to the public on Sept. 12 when The Intercept reported on Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s possession of a letter detailing Ford’s accusations against Kavanaugh.

Democrats on the Judiciary Committee and Ford herself began to call for the FBI to investigate the matter before the committee proceeded with the nomination as Ford went public with her allegation.

“I support Mrs. Ford’s decision to share her story, and now that she has, it is in the hands of the FBI to conduct an investigation,” Feinstein said in a statement. “This should happen before the Senate moves forward on this nominee.”

Carol Gonzalez, the vice president of membership for Sac State’s College Democrats, said that she believed the allegations should receive a thorough investigation.

“I feel that as a woman we aren’t usually given the ability to speak up or given the same playing ground as a man,” Gonzalez said. “So I feel that if a woman is taking the time to talk about something that happened to her that we should be able to respect her and give her the time and investigate.”

The College Democrats Vice President of Finance KaSandra Soto said that she thinks the nomination as a process had been rushed.

“I’m, in general, disappointed with the way that it’s been happening because they’re rushing through it and not taking their time,” Soto said. “Whereas when Obama was recently going to try and put in a nomination they basically told him no even though it was technically still his term and they ended up giving it to Trump.”

Soto said she believed the attempt to rush through the nominations was because of the upcoming election.

Ford’s accusations were joined by others as The New Yorker reported that Senate Democrats were investigating claims of sexual misconduct by Kavanaugh during his years at Yale made by Deborah Ramirez, a former classmate.

However, Republicans, including Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, began to claim that the accusations were no more than a Democratic smear campaign.

“Senate Democrats and their allies are trying to destroy a man’s personal and professional life on the basis of decades-old allegations that are unsubstantiated and uncorroborated,” McConnell said on the Senate floor. “This is what the so-called resistance has become, a smear campaign pure and simple aided and abetted by members of the United States Senate.”

“When you do everything that you can not to confirm this person, up to the point of accusing them of sexual harassment, sexual assault, as Judge Kavanaugh has been, I think that is a very serious claim to levy,” Floyd Johnson said.

Johnson, president of Sac State’s College Republicans, said he thinks Ford has not produced enough evidence to postpone the nomination process.

“At this point, the statute of limitations on the accusations has expired so he won’t get any jail time for this sort of thing but it puts into jeopardy the Supreme Court nomination,” Johnson said. “When something like that is on the line I think it’s very very serious and it shouldn’t be taken lightly, but at the same point Dr. Ford has not produced any evidence confirming her allegation.”

Kyle Shallcross, former president of the now inactive Hornet Republicans, said that while he believed Kavanaugh’s record made him a good judge that he neither stood with Kavanaugh or Ford when it comes to the allegations.

According to Shallcross, how the Democratic Party handled the #MeToo movement was a detriment to victims of sexual assault and misconduct.

“The challenge I see is that if we want to give merit to this movement and we want to hold a legitimate light to the sexual misconduct process we have to be consistent in how we do it,” Shallcross said. “Quite frankly I think the Democratic Party is using this situation as a means to weaponize the movement and use it for their own political advantage rather than use it for the advantage of all people, in particular women, who have dealt with these instances.”

Following a third accuser, Julie Swetnick, coming forward publicly Wednesday morning Democrats on the Judiciary Committee issued a statement for the White House to rescind Kavanaugh’s nomination.

“There are three women willing to testify under oath about credible allegations,” Sen. Kamala Harris, D-CA, a member of the Judiciary Committee, said on Twitter. “The GOP continues to refuse to call for an FBI investigation. It is time for Judge Kavanaugh’s nomination to be immediately withdrawn. Enough is enough.”

Gonzalez said that despite the claims of Republicans, Democrats take claims of sexual assault and harassment seriously.

“Republicans want to claim that it’s a Democratic smear campaign when Democrats take these things seriously,” Gonzalez said. “They’ve ensured that when people are accused of these allegations that they are asked to step down without even following an investigation because the Democratic Party respects what’s actually happening in these accusations.”

Gonzalez said she thinks the actions of the Republican party is disrespectful to women.

“I feel that for Republicans not to follow something like that it’s just disrespectful and it goes against the #MeToo movement,” Gonzalez said. “It also just comes to show that women are just disproportionately respected within politics.”

Correction: This post was updated Thursday, Sept. 27, at 1:30 p.m. to properly attribute Floyd Johnson, president of the College Republicans.