Sen. John Kennedy (R., La.) said Wednesday that Senate Democrats have used tactics in bad faith against Brett Kavanaugh, to the point of harming the Supreme Court nominee and others involved in the controversy surrounding his nomination.
California professor Christine Blasey Ford has accused Kavanaugh of sexually assaulting her when they were in high school. Her letter to Democratic lawmakers detailing the allegation was leaked to the press, which led her and Kavanaugh, who denies the accusation, to testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee last week on the matter. Ford's allegation currently lacks corroboration, but it did lead to an FBI investigation, which appears to be wrapping up without finding compelling evidence against Kavanaugh.
Two other women—Deborah Ramirez and Julie Swetnick—have accused Kavanaugh of sexual misconduct, although those claims, which Kavanaugh denies, have also been uncorroborated.
Republicans have argued that calls by Democrats for new investigations and further documents are meant to delay a vote on Kavanaugh's confirmation, and that focusing on Kavanaugh's drinking and high school jokes are part of a smear campaign.
To those who trust Democrats to seek the truth in good faith, Kennedy had a characteristically colorful response.
"If you think this is a search for the truth, you ought to put down the bong," he said, referring to the device used to smoke marijuana. "This isn't about the truth anymore; this is about just win, baby. Doesn't matter who gets destroyed."
Kennedy said Ford and Kavanaugh have both had their lives upended by the political firestorm over the latter's nomination, a firestorm for which he blamed Democrats wanting to block Kavanaugh from the Supreme Court. The senator said his constituents are thoroughly dissatisfied with how the Senate has handled the matter.
What I'm hearing from the voters in Louisiana is that enough is enough. They don't believe that anybody is in good faith right now in the United States Senate. They believe that there are some good people who are United States senators, but my constituents can't quite figure out what they're good for right now. They don't understand why, after 40 hours worth of testimony hearing Dr. Ford, hearing Judge Kavanaugh, six FBI investigations, now seven, a full investigation by the Judiciary Committee, more stalling and re-stalling in bad faith, that we haven't voted. And frankly, I agree with them.
Senate Democrats have taken a variety of routes in their condemnation of Kavanaugh, from arguing he should not have a presumption of innocence to sending fundraising emails about him during the hearing in which he and Ford testified about her allegation.
Kennedy also said that some Democratic senators do not have a soul and did not have to be breastfed as infants because they "went right to raw meat."
Some of my colleagues on the Democratic side are in good faith. Some I'm convinced—I could be convinced, I'm rapidly being convinced—don't have a soul. How did I put it, their mothers didn't breastfeed them. She didn't have to, they went to raw meat, right to raw meat. They don't care who gets destroyed—Dr. Ford, her confidentiality, her family. They don't care if Brett Kavanaugh gets destroyed, his reputation. Their whole mantra is just win, baby, just win. Do whatever it takes.
Kennedy said he expects Kavanaugh to be confirmed with some Democratic support, although he did not name who he thought would vote for him. Asked about Sen. Jeff Flake (R., Ariz.), who called for the new FBI investigation into the sexual allegations against Kavanaugh, Kennedy said he supports his actions but hopes Flake thinks through how to vote.
"I don't know what Senator Flake will do. I am not going to tell him what to do. He is a good man, he should follow his heart, but I hope he takes his brain with him," Kennedy said.
After dismissing Sen. Chris Coons' (D., Del.) call for the FBI investigation to go possibly beyond a week, Kennedy finished the interview by thanking Capitol Police officers with whom he planned a "Coffee With Cops" event. He took the opportunity to blast anti-police activists.
"I told [the officers] there are people out there who think cops are guilty until proven innocent, and my feeling is, if you hate cops just because they're cops, then the next time you get in trouble, feel free to call a crackhead," he said.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R., Ky.) said the Senate would vote on Kavanaugh's confirmation this week.