Both the New York Times and the Atlantic renewed attacks on Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh over debunked accusations of sexual harassment.
In their excerpts, they downplayed or ignored the part about Leland Keyser, whom Ford said was at the party where she was assaulted, did not recall the party or any others like it, said she doesn’t have “any confidence in the story” and that she had been pressured to endorse Ford’s story anyway under threat of having embarrassing details of her own life exposed.
As the Federalist’s Mollie Hemingway reported, The Atlantic published a new error in its efforts to discredit Kavanaugh.
In “We Spent 10 Months Investigating Kavanaugh. Here’s What We Found” – subhead: “Two journalists detail the results of their reporting on the Supreme Court justice’s past” –Kate Kelly and Robin Pogrebin, authors of the book “The Education of Brett Kavanaugh,” wrote that their reporting showed Kavanaugh had not harassed anyone in the last 35 years but accusations by Deborah Ramirez and Christine Blasey Ford “rang true” despite the fact they could not be proven.
On the allegation by Ramirez that Kavanaugh exposed himself to her at a drunken party in college, Pogrebin and Kelly wrote in their Atlantic piece:
“Using Martha’s common-sense test, the claims of Deborah Ramirez, while not proven by witnesses, also ring true to us. Ramirez, who was a Yale classmate of Kavanaugh’s, said he drunkenly thrust his penis at her during a party in their freshman-year dormitory, Lawrence Hall. The people who allegedly witnessed the event – Kavanaugh’s friends Kevin Genda, David Todd, and David White – have kept mum about it. Kavanaugh has denied it. If such an incident had occurred, Kavanaugh said, it would have been the ‘talk of campus.’”
But, as Hemingway wrote out, in the article in the New Yorker that first brought this incident to light, Ronan Farrow and Jane Mayer wrote that Genda, Todd and White had not been “mum.”
One of the classmates who Ramirez said encouraged Kavanaugh to expose himself, said, “I don’t think Brett would flash himself to Debbie, or anyone, for that matter.” The other classmate Ramirez claimed was involved said, “I have zero recollection” of the incident.
Four others – two of the male classmates Ramirez said were involved, as well as the wife of a third male student she said was involved and another classmate, Dan Murphy, who was said to have been there, released a joint statement that read in part: “We were the people closest to Brett Kavanaugh during his first year at Yale. He was a roommate to some of us, and we spent a great deal of time with him, including in the dorm where this incident allegedly took place. Some of us were also friends with Debbie Ramirez during and after her time at Yale. We can say with confidence that if the incident Debbie alleges ever occurred, we would have seen or heard about it – and we did not. The behavior she describes would be completely out of character for Brett. In addition, some of us knew Debbie long after Yale, and she never described this incident until Brett’s Supreme Court nomination was pending.”
It’s not that the authors didn’t know of this statement – it is quoted from in another place in the book. It is, as Hemingway points out, part of a “pattern of omitting exculpatory evidence that supports Kavanaugh’s consistent claim that he never sexually assaulted anyone.”
The authors, she wrote, characterize the statement as “disloyal to Ramirez.”