September 24, 2018


New York Times, New Yorker Spar Over Kavanaugh Story (Benjamin Hart, 9/24/18, New York)

[W]hen the New York Times addressed the allegations in a story about Kavanaugh's confirmation battle,  it didn't exactly allay those concerns with this passage:

The New York Times had interviewed several dozen people over the past week in an attempt to corroborate Ms. Ramirez's story, and could find no one with firsthand knowledge. Ms. Ramirez herself contacted former Yale classmates asking if they recalled the episode and told some of them that she could not be certain Mr. Kavanaugh was the one who exposed himself.

Particularly for those already primed to be suspicious of The New Yorker story, the Times' account was proof that there was less to it than met the eye.

The original New Yorker story seemed pretty self-damning:

She was at first hesitant to speak publicly, partly because her memories contained gaps because she had been drinking at the time of the alleged incident. In her initial conversations with The New Yorker, she was reluctant to characterize Kavanaugh's role in the alleged incident with certainty. After six days of carefully assessing her memories and consulting with her attorney, Ramirez said that she felt confident enough of her recollections....

At that point, we're skirting awfully close to just creating "memories."

The more damaging portion of that piece would seem to be this one, though not necessarily for Judge Kavanaugh:

After seeing Judge's denial, Elizabeth Rasor, who met Judge at Catholic University and was in a relationship with him for about three years, said that she felt morally obligated to challenge his account that " 'no horseplay' took place at Georgetown Prep with women." Rasor stressed that "under normal circumstances, I wouldn't reveal information that was told in confidence," but, she said, "I can't stand by and watch him lie." In an interview with The New Yorker, she said, "Mark told me a very different story." Rasor recalled that Judge had told her ashamedly of an incident that involved him and other boys taking turns having sex with a drunk woman. Rasor said that Judge seemed to regard it as fully consensual. She said that Judge did not name others involved in the incident, and she has no knowledge that Kavanaugh participated. But Rasor was disturbed by the story and noted that it undercut Judge's protestations about the sexual innocence of Georgetown Prep. 

It is at least plausible that a culture of using alcohol to render women semi-helpless did exist amongst this group of men.

Posted by at September 24, 2018 6:44 PM