During a press conference on Tuesday, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) stated that Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh does not have the presumption of innocence or guilt in a confirmation hearing.
A reporter asked Schumer if he agreed with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) assertion that Kavanaugh “deserves the presumption of innocence” and whether he viewed the hearing through the prism of a legal hearing.
“No it’s not a legal proceeding, it’s a fact-finding proceeding. We do this with every major nominee. And countless times, I think ten times in the last year when new information comes up the FBI goes again and does its background check,” Schumer said.
“This is standard operating procedure, and the question looms: Why are Republicans deviating from here? This is not a criminal trial. This is not a… a… this is to find the facts. You have two diametrically opposed stories, and there are two issues: A, which story is right, and if… if… Dr. Ford is telling the truth, then Judge Kavanaugh’s credibility is in great question,” Schumer stated.
He was then asked again if he though Kavanaugh had the presumption of innocence.
“I agree that we — this is not, that’s a criminal trial. What I believe is, we ought to get to the bottom and find the facts in the way that the FBI has always done. There’s no presumption of innocence or guilt when you have a nominee before you,” he concluded.
If FBI involvement was standard operating procedure after Kavanaugh’s background investigation has concluded why did the FBI refuse to investigate the matter further?
Also, how will Schumer determine the truthfulness of Dr. Ford’s allegations when, thus far, there has been no corroboration of her story, and there was no corroboration of Deborah Rameriz’s allegation?
Some of Schumer’s colleagues would disagree that there is no presumption of guilt, at least as far as Kavanaugh is concerned.
U.S. Senator Mazie Hirono (D-HI) last week said in the face of allegations against Kavanaugh that men needed to “shut-up and step-up.”
“I just want to say to the men of this country: Just shut up and step up. Do the right thing for a change,” Hirono said.
How are men supposed to step up? Believe the accuser and assume that the accused is guilty.
Hirono told Jake Tapper on CNN’s State of the Union that she did not deem Kavanaugh to be credible because of his view on the abortion issue. Tapper asked her about a recent Wall Street Journal editorial concerned about the lack of due process in instances like these.
She responded, “For The Wall Street Journal to come out and talk to me about due process or all the women out there that I’m hearing about that never came forward it is really important, not only for these survivors to be heard, but if their stories are as credible as Dr. Ford’s story is, they need to be believed.”
Later in the interview, after Tapper noted that there was no corroboration for Christine Ford’s accusation, she said, “This is a person that will be sitting on our Supreme Court, making decisions that will impact women’s reproductive choice. He very much is against women’s reproductive choice.”