A local teacher and loyal reader had the note below sent to us.
It is from the national president of the American federation of teachers.
We’re in the middle of the fourth day of the Kavanaugh hearings, and it’s worse than I could have imagined.
At every turn, Republicans have attempted to block the public and Senate Judiciary Committee Democrats viewing essential Kavanaugh records. This is yet another departure from the norms established for reviewing Supreme Court nominations. The lack of disclosure was so bad Sen. Cory Booker took the unprecedented step of releasing some of these records, so we could see that Kavanaugh believes racial profiling might be ok and Roe v. Wade is not settled law. And in response, Republicans threatened to expel Booker from the Senate.
Can you believe that? Booker is working to expose very real threats, but Senate Republicans are so intent on hiding anything damaging to Kavanaugh that they’re willing to try to expel Booker to keep it hidden.
While Senate Democrats are the minority, they rallied to back Booker. Sens. Richard Blumenthal, Chris Coons, Richard Durbin, Dianne Feinstein, Mazie Hirono and Sheldon Whitehouse have all said they’re with Booker and should be expelled too, if the GOP goes that route.
This is a pivotal moment. Everything is on the line, because Kavanaugh’s appointment to the Supreme Court will be for a lifetime. But despite new, damaging evidence, Republicans are moving forward.
Senate Dems need to know we back their efforts to ensure the public understands Kavanaugh’s record. Republicans need to know we want all of these documents to be public and the hearings to be halted until people have time to review them.
So much has come out in the last few days. First, Kavanaugh refused to say if he had discussed the Mueller investigation with the lawyers involved. We already know he would likely decide to protect Trump if he were on the court, and his non-answers yesterday made that even more clear.
Then there’s news that, even though he’s assured senators he respects settled law, in the past he’s said there’s no such thing. That means he’d be willing to overturn things we take for granted—like marriage equality, Roe v. Wade and our right to join a union.
During the questioning, Kavanaugh also refused to say he would uphold protections for people with pre-existing conditions.
And now, it looks like Kavanaugh misled the Senate while under oath in 2006. He told the late Sen. Ted Kennedy that he had no part in a confirmation hearing, but newly released documents contain emails that show he did. Telling the truth to the Senate while under oath is not optional.
Today, one of our members, Melissa Smith, a teacher from Oklahoma, will testify about our concerns over Kavanaugh’s positions on school vouchers, educational equity and privatization of schools.
This hearing, much like so much in the Trump administration, has butted our democracy. The American people need to have faith in the Supreme Court and our justice system, but the Republican Party is undermining that system by playing games with this nomination.
This is a lifetime appointment. Don’t Americans have a right to know Kavanaugh’s views on protecting healthcare and pre-existing conditions? On whether LGBTQ people will still be able to marry the person they love? On protecting the constitutional right to vote? Will this judge follow the constitution and hold the president of the United States accountable, or will he enable the president to be above the law? These are legitimate, nonpartisan questions we need answers to before any vote.
The Senate Democrats are standing up to this absurd process. Please take a moment to thank them, and tell Senate Republicans that this is a disgrace and it’s time to hit pause so the American people can examine Kavanaugh’s records.
Many of us would have thought that the president of a national teachers union would work on issues related to education.
We deserve better