Shortly after Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., decried left-wing activist harassment of Republicans related to the Brett Kavanaugh nomination, Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., invoked the Salem witch trial in a retort to a protester.
Hearing the protester shout as he spoke with media Thursday, Graham turned to her: “You’ve humiliated this guy enough and there seems to be no bottom for some of ya.”
The woman replied with a reference to the polygraph test taken by Kavanaugh accuser Christine Blasey Ford.
The senator shot back: “Why don’t we dunk him in water and see if he floats.”
Graham’s passionate scolding of Democrats last week during the Senate Judiciary Committee hearing featuring testimony from Kavanaugh and Ford already has endeared him to many Americans exasperated by the confirmation process. Graham called the Democrats’ treatment of Kavanaugh, particularly the dropping of an uncorroborated accusation in the 11th hour, “the most unethical sham since I’ve been in politics.”
The left-wing opposition to Kavanaugh has become personal, as Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., pointed out from the Senate floor Wednesday, citing widespread harassment of Republican lawmakers.
“One of our colleagues and his family were effectively run out of a restaurant in recent days,” McConnell said. “Another reported having protesters physically block his car door. And some have seen organized far-left protesters camp out at their homes.”
Fox News reported an increased police presence was visible Wednesday, with officers protecting Republican senators coming and going from their offices.
Graham was one of three Republican senators whose personal information was posted on the web, allegedly by a Democratic congressional intern who was arrested Wednesday, Fox News reported.
Speaking to reporters Thursday, Grassley referenced the demonstrators who have been outside his office over the past two weeks.
He said that while he would not use the term “fake news” to describe media, they have demonstrated “bias.” He recalled that while anti-Kavanaugh protesters have been interviewed, a pro-Kavanaugh demonstrator who wanted to talk was told that only opponents of the nominee were to be interviewed.
“Now that’s a bias that none of you should be proud of!” the senator said.
The Hill reported progressive and women’s groups coordinated 300 candlelit vigils across the nation on Wednesday night in opposition to Kavanaugh.
“Kavanaugh has shown that he is hostile to women,” wrote MoveOn, one of the groups behind the vigils, on the event page. “From his record against women’s health and autonomy to his record against workplace protections to the sexual assault allegations against him to the anger he displayed to female U.S. senators.”
Demonstrators at the Supreme Court vigil broke into chants of “vote him down!” and “believe survivors!”
In the interview Thursday that was interrupted by a protester, Graham said the “bottom line” is “process.”
“No Democrat except one, maybe two are going to vote for Brett Kavanaugh. Most all Democrats have made up their mind,” he said.
He paraphrased Sen. Mazie Hirono, D-Hawaii, saying “the goal here is to delay the hearing past the midterm so we can fill the seat.”
“Now she was foolish enough to say that, are we smart enough to believe her?” Graham asked.
“It will never be enough. If you don’t believe he’s a gang-rapist. If you don’t believe he’s a stumbling, bumbling drunk, serial sexual predator, maybe you’ll believe he lied about how much he drank in high school [or] that he threw ice at a party.
“Enough. Enough already. Let’s vote.”