If Brett Kavanaugh is confirmed to the Supreme Court today, many aggrieved Democrats have vowed to seek revenge. And the best form of revenge, of course, is to win elections in November and throw Republicans out of power.
A Kavanaugh confirmation will be seen as a big victory for President Trump and the Republican Party but it is a victory that will come with a steep political price. It may help not only this year’s Blue Wave election but it may also help Democrats win elections in many years to come.
From all reports, Democrats are now more fired up than ever to work hard and turn out voters on election day. There is unprecedented women’s anger that an anti-abortion judge will be confirmed despite allegations of sexual assault and misconduct against him. And this anger has already been shown to be a very powerful electoral force.
“What I have seen is anger and outrage from women in a way that I’ve never seen before,” said Karine Jean-Pierre, senior adviser and national spokeswoman for MoveOn.org. “I don’t think Republicans realize what they have unleashed.”
Shaunna Thomas from the national women’s group, UltraViolet Action made one short promise on Friday:
“This doesn’t end tomorrow. It ends in November,” she said.
Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.), expressed the views of may in saying that the GOP had disrespected all women by supporting Brett Kavanaugh.
“To all survivors of sexual assault: We hear you. We see you. We will give you dignity. Don’t let this process bully you into silence,” Harris tweeted Friday afternoon.
Some more rational Republicans were concerned when Trump mocked Dr. Christine Blasey Ford, during a rally in Mississippi. They are rightly worried that this kind of rhetoric will cause more loss of support for Republican candidates among suburban women. And when the GOP loses affluent, college-educated voters in suburban districts currently held by Republicans, they are in trouble.
An NPR/PBS/Marist poll from September made very clear that college-educated white women don’t like Trump. Fifty-seven percent within that group disapprove of Trump’s job performance, while only 38 percent approve.
According to GOP strategist Liz Mair:
“The party is already in trouble with suburban women. I just have a sneaking suspicion that the Republicans will find a way to mess this up. We are already in trouble with a group of voters we need to not totally hate us.”
But many Republicans believe they will be rewarded by conservative voters for getting Kavanaugh confirmed. They think these voters would not have gone to the polls if they had been unable to confirm Kavanaugh.
It’s true that social conservatives voted for Trump in the hope that he would tilt the Supreme Court in their favor, and he has done that. With Kavanaugh’s confirmation the Supreme Court will have a solid 5-4 conservative majority for many years in the future.
“At the moment it appears that Republican voters, Trump voters, have re-engaged and are heading to the polls,” said GOP pollster John McLaughlin on Friday.
So both sides believe the Kavanaugh confirmation fight has helped them. With just over four weeks until election day, it won’t take long for us to find out which side is correct.
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.