MSNBC Host Presses Baldwin on 'Nakedly Political' Decision to Oppose Kavanaugh Before Meeting Him

August 17, 2018

Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D., Wis.) said Friday she will meet with Supreme Court justice nominee Brett Kavanaugh even though she's already decided he's "in the pocket of corporate special interests" and she will vote against his confirmation.

MSNBC host Willie Geist pointed out to Baldwin on "Morning Joe" the public is polling divide on his confirmation, but he also noted she's come out against him before they've met or had confirmation hearings, saying that seemed "nakedly political."

"Shouldn't you wait to get all the documents and shouldn't you wait to get through the hearings before you declare that you won't support his nomination, because that kind of thing, and it's not just you by the way, looks pretty nakedly political to a lot of people," Geist said.

Baldwin replied Wisconsinites wanted a fair and impartial justice, and Kavanaugh didn't fit the bill.

"Women's health is in the cross hairs," she said. "We have issues of whether we're going to be able to protect clean water and clean air, and whether the next Supreme Court justice is going to be in the pocket of corporate special interests or fighting for consumers and workers, and so I think Wisconsinites look at this record, the record that has been publicly disclosed already, there's lots of documents, I assure you, and say this is not the fair, impartial jurist that we want."

"But do you think he deserves a chance to answer your questions before you've made up your mind about him?" Geist asked.

"Well, I certainly intend to meet with him. There's a lot that I want to go over. Certainly. there will be hearings, but I also have to question the process of who funded the organization that put together a list for President Trump to pick from?" Baldwin said. "This was not an exhaustive search, and Wisconsinites want impartiality."

Geist cited a CNN poll showing only 37 percent supporting Kavanaugh's confirmation, with 40 percent against, but a Quinnipiac poll out this week showed Kavanaugh with 44 percent in support and 37 percent opposing.