As we contemplate the vetting process that gives us judges who are qualified to sit on the Supreme Court, perhaps we also ought to give some thought to the vetting process we use for the kind of people who serve in the U.S. Senate.
Because I regret to inform you that, once again, they are not behaving well.
As part of my ongoing (and apparently successful) campaign to annoy partisans on both sides, I took some time to review some things I wrote for the late Weekly Standard back during the Brett Kavanaugh hearings in 2018. If you’re so inclined you can check them out here: “Democrats Behaving Badly,” and here: “The Anger of Brett Kavanaugh,” (on the archive site mangled by the Washington Examiner folks).
Which brings us to this year’s spectacle of performative assholery and payback by the GOP. I have to warn you: putting the behavior of senators during the Kavanaugh hearing alongside the behavior this time around is not an edifying experience.
If you watched any of yesterday’s hearings, you know the story.
There were occasional forays into actual questions of jurisprudence, but they were overshadowed by what has become the usual theatrics and demagoguery. Josh Hawley, who has transitioned from insurrectionist cheerleader to Q-adjacent conspiracy theorist, was predictably execrable. Tom Cotton hectored and badgered a preternaturally restrained Ketanji Brown Jackson on sentencing policies.
There were also questions about abortion, precedent, faith and… a dash of something else.
Herewith, four lowlights of the day’s proceedings (in no particular order):
Tanned, ready, and rested from berating airline employees, Ted Do You Know Who I Am Cruz set the tone of the attack on KBJ.