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Sep 07 2018

Perjury Problems

So last night, believe it or not, I got a phone call from Susan Collins at 2 am.

Now I’m inclined to believe it was a mistake, not just due to the lateness of the hour but also because only a few Gilmores are constituents and none of them have voted for Sue in…

Well, like ever.

In addition to a series of non-functional robo-call choices (they were in fact all non-functional, I tried them) was this- “If you would like to share your feelings about Crime Issues with Senator Collins, please press 1.”

Having been thwarted I am forced respond here.-

Senator Collins, I am deeply concerned about Crime, particularly the crime of perjury. I’m sure you’re aware that Brett Kavanaugh perjured himself at least 4 times during his testimony.

Newly Released Emails Show Brett Kavanaugh May Have Perjured Himself at Least Four Times
by Jay Michaelson, Daily Beast
09.07.18

Confirmation of Judge Pryor

The clearest contradiction between Judge Kavanaugh’s sworn testimony and the formerly confidential email record concerns the nomination of Judge William Pryor, a conservative firebrand. In 2006, Kavanaugh was asked, by the late Sen. Ted Kennedy, whether Pryor’s extreme statements disturbed him. Kavanaugh replied that he was not involved in the selection or vetting of Judge Pryor.

When Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT) asked him Thursday, “did you interview William Pryor?” Kavanaugh hedged a bit, saying “I don’t believe so. It’s possible but I don’t believe so.”

Leahy responded by entering a formerly-confidential email into the record that states clearly that Kavanaugh actually did interview Pryor. “How did the Pryor interview go?” he was asked in December, 2002. “Call me,” he replied.

Even if Kavanaugh’s 2018 hedge protects him against perjury, his flat denial in 2006—only three years after the Pryor nomination itself—is clearly a false statement given under oath.

Memogate

As we reported Wednesday, Leahy challenged Judge Kavanaugh over his role in “Memogate,” a 2003 scandal in which a low-level Republican aide named Manuel Miranda stole Democratic memos from a shared server. At his 2006 hearing, Kavanaugh denied receiving any stolen documents. Now, Kavanaugh says that while he may have received stolen documents, he didn’t know they were stolen.

Thursday, some—but apparently not all—of the Memogate emails were released, and they cast serious doubt on those claims.

(W)we now know that Kavanaugh received Democratic documents marked as confidential. A just-released email from Miranda, dated July 28, 2002, says that “Senator Leahy’s staff has distributed a confidential letter to Dem[ocratic] Counsel.” Miranda does not say how he somehow came into the possession of this confidential letter—though he does impudently “ask that no action be taken by any of your offices… except as I request.”

Warrantless Wiretaps

A third clearly false statement made by Kavanaugh under oath regards his involvement in President Bush’s “Terrorist Surveillance Program,” known by most people as the warrantless wiretapping program.

On Wednesday, Judge Kavanaugh said he first learned about it from a December 2005 article in The New York Times.

On Thursday, an email was released showing that Kavanaugh emailed John Yoo, the Department of Justice lawyer responsible for the Bush-era “torture memo,” about the program on Sept. 17, 2001. “Any results yet on the 4A implications of random/constant surveillance of phone and e-mail conversations of non-citizens who are in the United States when the purpose of the surveillance is to prevent terrorist/criminal violence?” Kavanaugh asked.

Roe

In fact, this is the least smoking of the emails’ smoking guns, but given that the entire confirmation process has been owned by this one issue, the disproportionate attention is understandable.

At issue is an op-ed which Kavanaugh was drafting which originally said that “it is widely accepted by legal scholars across the board that Roe v. Wade and its progeny are the settled law of the land”— language quite similar to that used by Kavanaugh himself in his confirmation hearings.

In a 2003 email, however, Kavanaugh said “I am not sure that all legal scholars refer to Roe as the settled law of the land at the Supreme Court level since Court can always overrule its precedent, and three current Justices on the Court would do so.”

Asked about the apparent contradiction Thursday, Kavanaugh noted that it is factually true that “all legal scholars” do not agree that Roe is the settled law of the land. Of course, “all legal scholars” don’t agree on anything at all, which is why phrases like that are known as “weasel words,” since they allow the writer to weasel out of meaning anything.

(R)emarks Kavanaugh made regarding racial profiling in the wake of 9/11.

On Jan. 17, 2002, he wrote in an email that he and others “DO need to grapple—and grapple now—with the interim question of what to do before a truly effective and comprehensive race-neutral system is developed and implemented.” In other words, although Kavanaugh says he “generally favor[s] effective security measures that are race-neutral,” non-race-neutral measures—i.e., racial profiling—will still have to be used in the meantime.

Once again, this is explosive material: a nominee for the Supreme Court has endorsed racial profiling, at least on an “interim” basis. Likewise with comments questioning whether Hawaiians count as Native Americans and accusing backers of affirmative action as acting in bad faith.

Senator Collins, I find it difficult to believe that you think a publicly admitted perjuror, a criminal, should be rewarded with a lifetime appointment to the highest court in the land rather than an orange jumpsuit in a Federal Correction Center.

ps. You might want to pass this along to Senator Scott.

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