Center for Inquiry Decries Sham Process that Placed “Mendacious” Kavanaugh on Supreme Court

For Immediate Release: October 8, 2018
Contact: Paul Fidalgo, Communications Director - (207) 358-9785

The Center for Inquiry (CFI) today expressed its outrage and deep concern for the future at the Senate’s confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh to the lifetime position of Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States. Following a 50-48 vote, retired Associate Justice Anthony Kennedy and Chief Justice John Roberts swore Kavanaugh into the position.

“Kavanaugh’s appointment has been rushed through amid clouds of suspicion on an overwhelmingly partisan party line vote in order to publicly deliver on this administration’s promise to the religious right that it will pack the Court with justices pledged to overturn Roe v. Wade,” said Nicholas Little, CFI’s Vice President and General Counsel. “President Trump and the Republican majority in the Senate have dismissed all allegations against Kavanaugh, ignored his mendacity to the Senate and his demonstrated lack of judicial temperament, and imposed him as the all-important fifth vote to roll back hard-won abortion rights, protections for the LGBTQ community, and further impose Christian privilege on atheists and minority believers.”

Kavanaugh’s appointment comes in the face of opposition both within the Senate and from public interests groups that is near unprecedented. His approval with only half of the Senate supporting him was made possible by Republican Majority Leader Mitch McConnell jettisoning the long-established filibuster rules for Supreme Court appointments. Groups from across the political spectrum called for the Senate to either reject Kavanaugh’s appointment or to delay it pending further investigation. The National Council of Churches called for a no vote. The American Bar Association requested a delay in proceedings. Over 2,400 law professors signed an open letter to the Senate opposing his appointment.

“Kavanaugh stands accused by multiple women of sexual assault and misconduct,” continued Nick Little. “The rushed investigation into these claims, which didn’t even bother to interview the accuser, is nothing more than a sham. Kavanaugh in his appearances before the Senate has told repeated lies, from the mundane, regarding his earlier drinking, to the specific, as to government programs he was involved in. Kavanaugh sat before the Senate and raged at his accusers, promising retribution against the conspiracy that was attacking him. He showed himself in those moments unworthy of a seat on the highest court, and incapable of filling it in the unbiased, unpartisan way it demands.”

“The Senate has traded justice for political expediency in this appointment,” said Robyn Blumner, CFI’s President and CEO. “The religious right has got what it was promised. The legitimate concerns of women across the country have been ignored. With Kavanaugh on the bench, we face a long fight to protect reproductive rights, equality for the LGBTQ community, and fair treatment for atheists and non-believers. CFI promises to carry on that fight – through legal action, through lobbying our elected representatives, through education. Now is not the time to give up; now is the time to redouble our efforts to ensure that religious privilege can never be allowed to trump the fundamental rights guaranteed to us by our constitution.”

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The Center for Inquiry (CFI) is a nonprofit educational, advocacy, and research organization headquartered in Amherst, New York, with executive offices in Washington, D.C. It is also home to the Richard Dawkins Foundation for Reason & Science, the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry, and the Council for Secular Humanism. The Center for Inquiry strives to foster a secular society based on reason, science, freedom of inquiry, and humanist values. Visit CFI on the web at