Media Figures Predicted Kavanaugh Wouldn't Make It on Supreme Court

October 10, 2018

While most figures in the media consigned themselves to saying Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh was in "jeopardy" or "trouble" during his confirmation process, some went further in predicting his nomination was "toast."

MSNBC anchor Rachel Maddow told Hillary Clinton last month it was her feeling that his nomination was "hurtling towards the sun," and frequent MSNBC guest Donna Edwards intoned Senate Republicans would be unable to "overcome" Christine Blasey Ford's "damning" testimony about the assault she claimed Kavanaugh committed.

White House reporter and CNN analyst April Ryan told HBO's Real Time with Bill Maher on Sept. 28 that her sourcing suggested he "may lose the confirmation," to loud cheers.

"From all the reporting and the sourcing that I'm getting, this is a moment in history where Brett Kavanaugh could actually ... may lose this nomination, may lose the confirmation ...  It's how things are lining up," Ryan said.

MSNBC anchor Nicolle Wallace vouched for frequent guest and Democratic attorney Michael Avenatti on Sept. 26 when his client Julie Swetnick came forward with claims—which she later changed—that Kavanaugh was involved with parties where gang rapes routinely occurred and he spiked girls' drinks. Had those charges been corroborated, Kavanaugh would certainly have been defeated and likely thrown off the D.C. Circuit Court at the very least.

"Avenatti is a bit of a showman, but he has represented women whose stories turned out to be true in the past," Wallace said.

Avenatti told CNN before Swetnick went public that he was "highly confident" in her allegations, and he said he had been "proven right time and time again" in the past. Swetnick's story came under heavy scrutiny due to the extreme nature of her allegations, and her credibility was questioned after it was revealed she had a history of making false accusations.

After Kavanaugh was confirmed, some Democrats blamed Avenatti for making the other accusers against Kavanaugh seem politically motivated, although plenty of Democrats included Swetnick among the "credible" accusations made against him at the time.

Sen. Cory Booker (D., N.J.) stayed hopeful until the end, however, telling CNN host Don Lemon shortly before the confirmation vote he was a "prisoner of hope" that Kavanaugh wouldn't make it through.