Sometimes it pays to stand up for your principles. Many people thought that vulnerable red-state Democrats would cave and vote ‘yes’ on Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination to the Supreme Court, but that has not happened.
Yesterday Democratic Senator Heidi Heitkamp from North Dakota shocked the political world when she boldly proclaimed she could not vote in favor of Kavanaugh’s nomination.
Even though she is behind in the polls in a strongly pro-Trump state, Heitkamp took her stand based on what she believes, not on what was politically expedient.
She said it was Dr. Christine Ford’s credible testimony that swayed her to decide to cast her vote against Kavanaugh’s confirmation on the Supreme Court. And then her brother told MSNBC that political pressure be damned, his sister needed to “like the person she sees” in the mirror.
“Heidi Heitkamp’s brother Joel on MSNBC: “She may lose. But in the morning, when she’s brushing her teeth, she needs to like the person she sees.”
Heidi Heitkamp's brother Joel on MSNBC: "She may lose. But in the morning, when she's brushing her teeth, she needs to like the person she sees."
— Philip Rucker (@PhilipRucker) October 4, 2018
After Senator Heitkamp’s announcement droves of people started showing their appreciation to her by making unprecedented amounts of donations to her campaign.
The Democratic fundraising site ActBlue posted a tweet with a graphic illustrating the spike in her donations after her Kavanaugh position became known to the public.
“This is what grassroots activism looks like. Check out the ActBlue contributions per minute graph after @HeidiHeitkamp announced she’s voting NO on Kavanaugh.”
— ActBlue (@actblue) October 4, 2018
Senator Heitkamp may be the most endangered Democrat in the Senate, but to many people she is now a hero. She took a courageous stand to support women who have been sexually assaulted, and it may hurt her political career.
She wrote about her decision:
“When I listened to Dr. Ford testify, I heard the voices of women I have known throughout my life who have similar stories of sexual assault and abuse.”
Senator Heitkamp deserves a lot of praise and recognition because she chose to vote her conscience. This is what is needed in Washington, and perhaps the people of North Dakota will be swayed by her courage and decide to keep her in office.
Reportedly her base of supporters in her home state have been energized by her gutsy stand, and it’s not too late for them to get out and work hard for the next month for her re-election.
Millions of people around the country will now be rooting for Senator Heidi Heitkamp — an inspirational leader who demonstrated yesterday how a United States Senator is supposed to behave. Even if she loses the election she will have won another battle, because she has remained true to her self and to her ideals.
Here is the tweet from the senator which contains her entire statement:
“My statement on U.S. Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh:”
My statement on U.S. Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh: pic.twitter.com/exZcK78JtF
— Sen. Heidi Heitkamp (@SenatorHeitkamp) October 4, 2018
I am a lifelong Democrat with a passion for social justice and progressive issues. I have degrees in writing, economics and law from the University of Iowa.