On Friday, right after news that Sen. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) would vote for Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh, two women barricaded Flake in an elevator with two of his female staffers. They yelled at him, saying his vote communicates to “all women that they don’t matter.”
“On Monday I stood in front of your office… I told the story of my sexual assault,” one woman declared. “I told it because I recognized in Dr. Ford’s story that she is telling the truth.”
“What you are doing is allowing someone who actually violated a woman to sit in the Supreme Court!” she alleged. “This is horrible. … You have children in your family. Think about them. I have two children. I cannot imagine that for the next 50 years they will have to have someone in the Supreme Court who has been accused of violating a young girl.”
While this woman spoke, Flake and his staff requested that she leave the elevator and allow him to move. She did not listen. Flake’s two female staffers stood there, taking abuse with their boss, as though their presence was irrelevant.
Another woman started yelling over the first woman. “I was sexually assaulted and nobody believed me!” she declared. “I didn’t tell anyone and you’re telling all women that they don’t matter. That they should just stay quiet because if they tell you what happened to them, you’re going to ignore them. That’s what happened to me and that’s what you’re telling all women in America.”
The second protester suggested that, by voting to confirm Kavanaugh, Flake was telling women “that they don’t matter, that they should just keep it to themselves because if they have told the truth you’re just going to help that man to power anyway. That’s what you’re telling all of these women.”
The second woman made it personal. “That’s what you’re telling me right now. Look at me when I’m talking to you,” she declared. “You’re telling me my assault doesn’t matter. That what happened to me doesn’t matter.”
The first woman launched into Flake again. “You’re allowing someone who is unwilling to take responsibility for his own actions … the harm that he has done to one woman — actually, three women…”
Respectfully, Flake responded, “I need to go to the hearing.”
The second woman again shouted, “You have power when so many women are powerless!”
At that point, Flake’s female staff responded, “We have your press available to talk to you guys. Either come in or out, thank you.”
One woman shot back, “Thank you is not an answer!”
Even CNN anchor Jim Sciutto commented on this remarkable protest. “I don’t think we have witnessed a moment like that in recent memory,” he said. “A U.S. senator confronted by two, I believe, two women who say they have been raped themselves. One of them saying to him, and I’m quoting through tears, ‘Don’t look away from me. Look at me and tell me that it doesn’t matter what happened to me.'”
In the midst of all this heat, it is important to remember that no witness has confirmed the sexual assault allegations from Christine Blasey Ford, or those from any of the four other accusers who came forward against Kavanaugh. Indeed, two of the accusations were so laughable they practically disproved themselves — and one accuser later “recanted.”
Liberals have gone crazy because this Supreme Court seat is widely considered the pivotal “fifth vote.” More than 200 activists were arrested for protesting the hearings, and activists have dressed up like handmaids from “The Handmaid’s Tale,” suggesting that if Kavanaugh were to be confirmed, women would lose all rights and there would be a government-mandated system of rape.
Meanwhile, about 200 women have testified to Kavanaugh’s high moral character — including two of his former girlfriends, one of whom called him a “perfect gentleman.” As Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) put it yesterday, “It’s been my understanding that if you drug women and rape them for two years in high school, you probably don’t stop.”
Sen. Dianne Feinstein had hired a lawyer for Ford, but kept these accusations secret to use as an eleventh-hour smear to prevent Kavanaugh’s confirmation. She could have prevented all of this, and led a private investigation, but instead Democrats have used this as a political tool to proclaim their “belief” in “survivors,” rather than actually helping people like Christine Blasey Ford. She, too, is a victim of these tactics.
Whatever you think about Brett Kavanaugh, Flake’s vote to confirm him does not communicate invalidating messages to women. It merely communicates that this senator will not allow last-minute accusations to derail the nomination of a judge who is eminently qualified to sit on the Supreme Court.
Even if Christine Blasey Ford and the other women who accused Kavanaugh of sexual assault had witnesses who corroborated their stories, and if they had concrete details and evidence to bolster their claims, Flake’s vote would still not mean what these women want it to mean.
As it stands, the accusations against Kavanaugh have not been proven or even supported by witnesses or evidence. These women are engaging in a heartfelt protest, but their arguments are hollow. Neither Flake nor Kavanaugh has said anything about the horrific trauma these women claim to have experienced. Neither Flake nor Kavanaugh is diminishing, by one iota, the horrors of sexual assault across America.
Just as no woman deserves to be assaulted, no man deserves to be considered guilty in the face of evidence. Sadly, these female protesters did not just yell at Flake for voting for Kavanaugh, they assumed that Kavanaugh was guilty, despite his denials and despite the lack of evidence proving his guilt.
The truly scary part of this story is not that these women who claim to have been wronged feel personally invalidated by Flake’s vote. The scary part is that these women have decided Kavanaugh is guilty and are willing to obstruct a U.S. senator in order to force him to cave to political pressure. They are effectively tarring and feathering not just Kavanaugh but anyone who votes to confirm him, and pretending to be victims while they do it.
Follow the author of this article on Twitter at @Tyler2ONeil.