Nomination of Judge Brett Kavanaugh

Kavanaugh confirmed amid questions of temperament, sexual assault


On October 6, the Senate confirmed Brett Kavanaugh for a seat on the United States Supreme Court. This vote took place amid accusations of sexual assault, serious questions about the truthfulness of Kavanaugh’s testimony during his confirmation hearings, and ongoing concerns about his temperament. View ACS’s statement.

Lawyers across the ideological spectrum questioned Kavanaugh’s temperament

After his political and belligerent tone at the September 27 Senate hearing, legal observers are raising concern about Brett Kavanaugh’s fitness for office.

NPR: Brett Kavanaugh Faces Skepticism About The Way He Defended Himself, including interview of Jill Dash, ACS VP of Strategic Engagement

“His behavior on Thursday was shocking in an era where not very much is shocking. He interrupted Senators, answered questions with questions…it was very surprising to hear a judge speaking like that. I don’t think a judge would tolerate that from a litigant in their courtroom.”

Huffington Post: More Than 500 Law Professors Condemn Kavanaugh For ‘Lack Of Judicial Temperament’ by Matt Ferner

Huffington Post Opinion: Confirming Brett Kavanaugh Now Would Destroy The Supreme Court As We Know It by Geoffrey Stone, ACS Board of Advisors member

Los Angeles Times: Kavanaugh’s angry testimony may save his nomination, but undercut his claims of being an impartial jurist by David Savage. Jill Dash quoted.

“Putting someone on the court with a seething partisan vindictiveness will do real damage to the institution. It is not how we expect a Supreme Court justice, or any judge, to comport himself.”

NECN: What Should We Expect If Kavanaugh is on the Court? Kent Greenfield, ACS Faculty Advisor at Boston College Law School is interviewed

Whiplash: Kavanaugh, Rosenstein, and the Threat to Justice

In a surprise development on September 28, the Senate Judiciary Committee requested a one-week FBI investigation into the sexual assault allegations against Brett Kavanaugh. What does this mean? Listen to our conversation with Demand Justice’s David Kang, the National Women Law Center’s Judith Lichtman, and Thiru Vignarajah. Link here.


ACSblog: A Sad Week for the Senate, A Devastating Week for the Supreme Court

Ready to act?

7 Ways to Protect the Supreme Court

Media Outreach Guide – How to secure radio and television interviews and write impactful Op-Eds and LTEs.


ACS on the Kavanaugh Hearings

The confirmation hearings for Judge Brett Kavanaugh were a travesty – part of a rushed and highly flawed nomination process. ACS is urging the Senate to delay any vote on Kavanaugh’s nomination until it has conducted a thorough review of all relevant files.


View ACS President Caroline Fredrickson’s statement about the hearings:

ACS Supreme Court Preview

Top legal scholars discuss the Kavanaugh nomination and the upcoming Supreme Court term.


Latest analysis from ACS:

USA Today: Kavanaugh’s record of misleading statements gives Jeff Flake’s FBI inquiry many targets by ACS President Caroline Fredrickson and Norm Eisen

Los Angeles Times: Kavanaugh’s angry testimony may save his nomination, but undercut his claims of being an impartial jurist by David G. Savage, quoting ACS Board member Erwin Chemerinsky and VP of Strategic Engagement Jill Dash

The New York Times: At Times, Kavanaugh’s Defense Misleads or Veers Off Point by Mike McIntire, Linda Qiu, Steve Eder and Kate Kelly

Kavanaugh Hearings Day Four: ACS Experts Testify

Professors Melissa Murray, Lisa Heinzerling, and Peter Shane were invited by the committee to weigh in.

Kavanaugh Hearings Day Three: Leaked Documents Show Troubling Positions

Questions about Roe as settled law, stolen documents, and prior sworn testimony brought into question surfaced as Democrats released previously hidden documents.

Kavanaugh Hearings Day Two: Dishonesty on Garza

Carolyn Shapiro breaks down Kavanaugh’s dishonest answers and other key details.

Kavanaugh Hearings Day One: Documents, Protests, and Democracy

The first of our daily recaps of the Kavanaugh hearings.

Shell Game: Expect Trump’s SCOTUS Nominee Kavanaugh to Duck and Dodge Key Questions During Confirmation Hearings

In a new ACSblog, President Caroline Fredrickson explains the four key issues to watch for as the hearings unfold.

Document Fight

Demand that the Senate Review All Kavanaugh Documents

The Senate Republican leadership has scheduled hearings on Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination to the Supreme Court beginning September 4, long before anyone will have had a chance to review documents from Kavanaugh’s time in the George W. Bush administration.

Proper Senate review of Kavanaugh’s record must include all records from his extensive service in the Bush administration. The Senate should use the same process for for considering those documents as it used for Justice Kagan in her time in the Clinton White House.

A rushed confirmation process prevents the American people from getting a full picture of the nominee. And it runs counter to the very process leading Republicans have demanded in the past.


Spread the word

Share these posts to raise awareness among your networks about how Senate Republicans are trying to rush the confirmation process.

Document Fight Analysis

The New York TimesWhy Are Republicans Covering Up Brett Kavanaugh’s Past? by The New York Times Editorial Board

SlateThe Senate Must Closely Examine These Documents From Kavanaugh’s Bush Years by Peter M. Shane

USA Today: Would Brett Kavanaugh be a check on Trump if he tried to abuse his power? We need to know. by Caroline Fredrickson and Norm Eisen

The Washington Post: Republicans are obstructing a fair vetting of Brett Kavanaugh by John Podesta and Todd Stern

The Washington Post: Here’s who should demand to see Kavanaugh’s White House paper trail by Ron Klain, ACS Board member


Background and Analysis

On July 9, President Trump nominated Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court.
Read a brief summary on Kavanaugh here.

President Trump has a radical far right agenda that is completely out of touch with the American mainstream; Brett Kavanaugh will be just another step forward in pressing that agenda.

Don’t fall for empty statements from Kavanaugh that he will follow settled law or make rulings based on the merits of cases before him. As the President’s nominee for the Court, Kavanaugh has met the President’s litmus test and will expressly target laws, freedoms, and protections that the radical far right has been trying to undo for decades. And based on his record, we know that Kavanaugh will:

  • Threaten Roe v. Wade and the fundamental right of women to protect their bodies by ensuring access to safe and legal abortion
  • Exacerbate the Supreme Court’s trend of favoring big corporations
  • Allow Donald Trump’s abuses of power to go unchecked.


Listen to ACS Experts on the vacancy

Latest on Abuse Allegations:

Kavanaugh’s accuser deserves a fair criminal investigation by Thiru Vignarajah, ACS member

The Ugly Double Standard Over Kavanaugh’s So-Called Youth by Shira Scheindlin, ACS Board member, and Kristin Clarke

Why We Need an FBI Investigation by Hon. Nancy Gertner, ACS Board member

What Should Happen at Kavanaugh’s Hearing?

The Los Angeles Times: The Senate can demand answers from Brett Kavanaugh. If he isn’t honest, he shouldn’t be confirmed by Erwin Chemerinsky, ACS Board member

WBUR: How Badly Does The GOP Want Kavanaugh? So Much That They’ll Ignore Trump’s Treason by Kent Greenfield, ACS Faculty Advisor at Boston College Law School

The New York Times: How Will We Know What a Supreme Court Nominee Really Thinks? by Linda Greenhouse, ACS Board of Advisors member

The Washington Post: Kavanaugh faces a tougher path to confirmation than Gorsuch. Here’s why. by Ronald Klain, ACS Board of Advisors member

ACSblog: Questions for Judge Kavanaugh on his Disqualification from Certain Cases Involving the Powers and Immunities of the President by Alan Neff

The New York Times: Will Kavanaugh Provide Cover for Trump? by Caroline Fredrickson, ACS President and Norm Eisen, Co-Founder, CREW

Huffington PostIt’s Now Up To Senate Moderates To Save The Supreme Court by Geoffrey Stone, ACS Board of Advisors member

ACSblog: Yale Law Students Speak Out on Judge Kavanaugh by Cara Reichard, Co-President, Yale Law School ACS Chapter

ABA Journal: Chemerinsky: Conservatives’ victories in key cases are a harbinger of what is to come by Erwin Chemerinsky, ACS Board member

The Sacramento Bee: If you think the Supreme Court is conservative now, just wait for Kennedy’s retirement by Erwin Chemerinsky, ACS Board member

The New York TimesHow Will We Know What a Supreme Court Nominee Really Thinks? by Linda Greenhouse, ACS Board of Advisors member

The Register-Herald: Before Kavanaugh vote, a refresher by Simon F. Haeder

ACSblog: Evaluating a Supreme Court Nominee by Joel Goldstein


What Does It Mean to Call Kavanaugh an Originalist?

PoliticoWhy You Shouldn’t Care Whether Kavanaugh Is an ‘Originalist’ by Aziz Huq

The Daily Beast: Dems Need to Pin Brett Kavanaugh on Which Constitution He Supports by Geoffrey R. Stone, ACS Board member

St. Louis Post Dispatch: The people’s court and the people’s rights by Gregory Magarian, ACS Faculty Advisor at Washington University School of Law

Tulsa World: Plain talk about ‘plain meaning’ by Tamara Piety, ACS Faculty Advisor at University of Tulsa College of Law


Kavanaugh is a Threat to Reproductive Rights

The St. Louis AmericanKavanaugh is a Threat to Constitutional Right to Abortion and Birth Control by Jose Caldera, ACS member

The Washington PostReversing Roe v. Wade will be just the beginning by Ron Klain, ACS Board member.

The Boston GlobeBrett Kavanaugh’s record makes his antiabortion stance clear by Nancy Gertner, ACS Board member and Senior Lecturer on Law, Harvard University

The New York Times: The End of Abortion by Reva Siegel, ACS Board of Advisors member and Nicholas deB. Katzenbach Professor of Law at Yale Law School

The HillYes, things can get worse — especially with Justice Kavanaugh, Michelle Goodwin

New York Magazine: A 2017 Kavanaugh Speech Will Become a Flash Point in Confirmation Fight, Ed Kilgore

The Daily Beast: Here’s What Life Was Like for Women in America Before ‘Roe’ by Geoffrey Stone, ACS Board of Advisors member

ACSblog: Stakes Couldn’t Be Higher With Court Selection by John Hamilton, Mayor of Bloomington, IN and Dawn Johnsen, Walter W. Foskett Professor of Law at Indiana University Maurer School of Law

Bangor Daily NewsAny Supreme Court justice must affirm our personal liberty by Andrea L. Irwin


Will Kavanaugh Help Conservatives Overturn the ACA?

CNN: Kavanaugh’s Obamacare rulings under microscope as he meets Manchin by Joan Biskupic

Indianapolis Star: Affordable Care Act helps consumers by Liane Hulka,

The NWI Times: Kavanaugh hazardous to Hoosiers’ health by Fran Quigley

The Journal Gazette: Threat to Obamacare should disqualify Kavanaugh by Fran Quigley

Charleston Gazette-MailHealth care, lives will be affected by Supreme Court choice by Jennifer D. Oliva

Charleston Gazette-MailBefore Kavanaugh votes, senators must think of WV’s wellbeing, health by Simon F. Haeder

Knox NewsKavanaugh confirmation could devastate Americans with pre-existing conditions by Michele Johnson


Kavanaugh’s Threat to Separation of Powers

ACS Webinar: Game Changer: Brett Kavanaugh, Presidential Power, and the Mueller Investigation

ACSblog: Judge Kavanaugh on Separation of Powers by Carolyn Shapiro

NPRWhat A Justice Kavanaugh Could Mean For The Mueller Investigation And Trump by Nina Totenberg, quoting Victoria Nourse and Steve Vladeck

ACSblog: Congress Should Be Concerned That Brett Kavanaugh Wants to Further Restrict Its Power by Dan Froomkin

ACSblog: The Special Counsel, Morrison v. Olson, and the Dangerous Implications of the Unitary Executive Theory by Victoria Nourse

Slate: Brett Kavanaugh’s Legal Opinions Show He’d Give Donald Trump Unprecedented New Powers by Jed Shugerman

Huffington Post: It’s Too Late For The Supreme Court, But Lower Courts Can Still Check Trump by Nancy Gertner, ACS Board member and Senior Lecturer on Law, Harvard University

Billings Gazette: Guest view: Kavanaugh will keep Trump’s legacy alive for decades by James C. Nelson, Montana Supreme Court Justice (Ret.)


How Will Kavanaugh Treat Workers?

SlateBrett Kavanaugh Has His Own “Frozen Trucker” Case by Terri Gerstein, ACS State AG Project Advisory Committee

The Journal GazetteLabor would be a loser in Kavanaugh votes by William R. Groth

The Las Vegas Sun: Supreme Court nominee doesn’t respect precedent by Ruben Garcia, ACS Board member

This piece was featured on SCOTUSblog

ACSblog: Judge Kavanaugh’s Dissent in OSHA Case Reflects Deep Skepticism Toward Federal Agency Enforcement of Workplace Protections by Ruben Garcia, Associate Dean for Faculty Development and Research and Professor at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, William S. Boyd School of Law


How will Kavanaugh affect LGBTQ rights?

IndyStarWhere does Kavanaugh stand on LGBT issues? by Steve Sanders, ACS Faculty Advisor at Indiana University Maurer School of Law

The New York Times: Without Kennedy, the Future of Gay Rights Is Fragile by Adam Winkler, ACS Board member, and Kent Greenfield, ACS Faculty Advisor at Boston College Law School


How will Kavanaugh Deal with Money and Politics?

The Washington PostBrett Kavanaugh, the man who created the super PAC by Albert W. Alschuler


What are Kavanaugh’s views on the 2nd Amendment? 

WHYYSupreme Court nominee Kavanaugh’s gun views are clear by Michael Kunzelman and Larry Neumeister