BREAKING NEWS Mandatory mask order begins for all of Madison County at 5 p.m. Tuesday Full Story

A look at Brett Kavanaugh's Yale years

CNN's Miguel Marquez looks at Brett Kavanaugh's time at Yale University as new allegations of inappropriate, sexually aggressive behavior emerge against the Supreme Court nominee.

Posted: Sep 27, 2018 12:27 PM
Updated: Sep 27, 2018 12:53 PM

Brett Kavanaugh is now facing three accusers (and counting) and a very real possibility of seeing his nomination to the Supreme Court wither and die. His difficulties stem from an early, unwise decision to deny alleged involvement in a rowdy, alcohol-soaked culture of Georgetown Preparatory School and Yale University.

Imagine what would have happened if, when first confronted by the accusation of sexual abuse by Christine Blasey Ford, Kavanaugh — who says it did not happen -- had instead simply said something like: "My high school and college years included a lot of irresponsible behavior, much of it involving alcohol abuse. While I do not remember the events or actions alleged by Dr. Ford, I deeply apologize for any actions I took that caused her to feel harmed, abused or unsafe in any way. Few things are more terrifying than to feel that one's personal safety is at risk, and I take Dr. Ford at her word that I caused those feelings in her. That was never my intention, and I am greatly distressed to learn that she has carried these feelings for many years. I sincerely apologize to Dr. Ford and her family, and would welcome a private dialogue with her to discuss any ways to repair the damage I caused."

Kavanaugh said no such thing, of course. In fact, he issued statements denying any bad behavior on his part at any time during his youth -- "immediately, unequivocally, and categorically," in the words of his statement prepared in advance of the next Senate Judiciary Committee hearing.

"I never did anything remotely resembling what Dr. Ford describes," Kavanaugh says in the statement. "The allegation of misconduct is completely inconsistent with the rest of my life. The record of my life, from my days in grade school through the present day, shows that I have always promoted the equality and dignity of women."

The categorical denial creates a problem for Kavanaugh. Claiming such a high standard of conduct opened the door to public statements of college classmates who say his behavior was far from exemplary.

"He's trying to paint himself as some kind of choirboy," Lynne Brookes told the Washington Post. Brookes, a Republican, former pharmaceutical executive and former roommate of a woman Kavanaugh allegedly abused, claims she encountered the future judge drunk at a college fraternity event. "You can't lie your way onto the Supreme Court, and with that statement out, he's gone too far. It's about the integrity of that institution."

Liz Swisher, a Democrat who was on the Yale campus at the same time as Kavanaugh, also went public with a damning take on his behavior. "Brett [Kavanaugh] was a sloppy drunk, and I know because I drank with him. I watched him drink more than a lot of people. ...it's not credible for him to say that he has had no memory lapses in the nights that he drank to excess."

The sticky politics of sorting truth from falsehood will be much tougher than it needed to be. Back in 1999, when asked about rumors that he abused alcohol and cocaine, candidate George W. Bush answered the allegations with the blunt, opaque admission: "When I was young and irresponsible, I was young and irresponsible."

Bush's opponents found it hard to make much out of that. And no schoolmates popped up to challenge what was, after all, an acknowledgment that he misbehaved.

Kavanaugh won't get any kind of similar wiggle room. He may someday come to regret pretending to have been a paragon of virtue in an environment that clearly was governed by vice.

Huntsville
Few Clouds
80° wxIcon
Hi: 87° Lo: 70°
Feels Like: 84°
Florence
Clear
79° wxIcon
Hi: 86° Lo: 72°
Feels Like: 82°
Fayetteville
Scattered Clouds
75° wxIcon
Hi: 87° Lo: 69°
Feels Like: 75°
Decatur
Few Clouds
80° wxIcon
Hi: 86° Lo: 70°
Feels Like: 84°
Scottsboro
Overcast
77° wxIcon
Hi: 87° Lo: 70°
Feels Like: 78°
WAAY Radar
WAAY WAAY-TV Cam
WAAY Temperatures

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 44375

Reported Deaths: 984
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Jefferson5221152
Montgomery4127103
Mobile4080134
Tuscaloosa228842
Marshall171110
Madison14307
Lee138437
Shelby128423
Morgan11025
Walker93924
Elmore92514
Franklin89514
Dallas8809
Baldwin8649
Etowah73913
DeKalb7195
Butler63328
Chambers62927
Autauga60712
Tallapoosa59169
Russell5520
Unassigned50323
Houston4964
Limestone4950
Lauderdale4906
Lowndes47221
Cullman4524
Pike4295
Colbert3956
St. Clair3822
Coffee3772
Bullock36910
Covington3587
Calhoun3545
Escambia3506
Barbour3492
Hale31121
Talladega3097
Marengo30211
Wilcox2918
Dale2880
Sumter28512
Clarke2746
Jackson2732
Winston2583
Chilton2462
Blount2351
Monroe2352
Pickens2356
Marion22413
Conecuh2097
Randolph2069
Choctaw19512
Macon1949
Bibb1901
Greene1868
Perry1771
Henry1343
Crenshaw1253
Washington1097
Lawrence1080
Cherokee977
Geneva800
Lamar771
Fayette701
Clay652
Coosa581
Cleburne361
Out of AL00

Tennessee Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 51316

Reported Deaths: 645
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Shelby11793200
Davidson11089122
Rutherford298735
Hamilton278135
Sumner161052
Trousdale14985
Williamson131315
Out of TN11857
Knox11717
Wilson94117
Putnam8837
Robertson83411
Sevier8043
Bradley7073
Lake6920
Tipton6455
Unassigned6351
Bledsoe6201
Bedford5705
Montgomery5547
Macon4654
Maury3543
Hardeman3434
Hamblen3404
Fayette3172
Madison2992
Loudon2871
Rhea2860
Dyer2511
McMinn23718
Cheatham2301
Blount2273
Dickson2090
Cumberland1814
Washington1650
Lawrence1636
Lauderdale1453
Anderson1422
Monroe1406
Jefferson1360
Gibson1291
Smith1201
Coffee1190
Sullivan1172
Obion1122
Hardin1087
Greene1032
Cocke940
Haywood922
Marshall911
Franklin873
Wayne860
Hickman800
Warren760
Marion734
McNairy730
White703
DeKalb670
Lincoln640
Weakley641
Grundy621
Overton621
Roane620
Giles601
Carter591
Hawkins572
Unicoi550
Campbell481
Carroll471
Henderson460
Claiborne450
Polk450
Henry440
Johnson440
Grainger420
Sequatchie420
Crockett383
Cannon370
Chester340
Perry340
Meigs320
Humphreys281
Jackson270
Morgan271
Stewart230
Decatur220
Fentress220
Union180
Clay170
Scott170
Houston150
Benton131
Moore120
Van Buren80
Hancock60
Lewis60
Pickett60

 

 

Community Events