A Project for Better Journalism chapter

Change needed in mid-terms

Brett Kavanaugh was confirmed to the supreme court Saturday with a vote of 50 to 48 — one of the narrowest SCOTUS rulings in history.

His confirmation puts a sexual assault perpetrator in the highest court of the land. This is a major step backward for women, same-gender loving people, people of color and other marginalized groups. He will seriously mar the supreme court’s historical non-partisan role.

His presence even risks reversal of landmark decisions such as Roe v. Wade and Windsor v. Obergefell.

One reason his placement is so important is the way in which it shifts power in the court. His predecessor, Anthony Kennedy, was very moderate. This created a fairly balanced court. Kavanaugh is a hardliner Republican, giving Republicans a reliable SCOTUS majority.

The senators who supported his nomination need to be voted out of office. Early signs are promising: just minutes after Senator Susan Collins announced her support for Kavanaugh, the website to donate for a PAC aimed at voting Collins out crashed from high volume.

Progressive Democrats are angry and energized, protesting in the streets of Washington and on the steps of the Capitol Saturday and Monday. This anger will carry over into the voting booth. This will only serve to strengthen the ‘blue wave’ many analysts have predicted, as well as the historical trend of the president’s party losing seats in the midterm election. This all makes for a perfect storm to take back both the House and the Senate.

Until then, one thing is clear: November 6th can’t come fast enough.