A bemused New York Times columnist has taken a hard look at the latest attempt to help embattled Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh — now derided as the “doppelgänger” or “evil twin” defense — and gave his boosters an “E” for effort and an “F” for fail.
According to fans of the reeling Kavanaugh –who could see his hopes of becoming the fifth conservative justice on the highest court in the land — it is possible that accuser Christine Ford is mistaken over who attempted to rape her when they were teens.
The idea that there is a Kavanaugh “doppelgänger” was first floated by conservative Washington Post columnist Kathleen Parker, with the Pulitzer Prize winner stating, “In one of Brett M. Kavanaugh’s responses to allegations that he sexually assaulted a 15-year-old girl when he was in high school, a charge he has denied “categorically and unequivocally,” he suggested that, perhaps, this was a case of mistaken identity.”
Conservative gadfly Ed Whelan jumped on the mistaken identity bandwagon with a tweetstorm that included diagrams and floor plans of the supposed scene of the crime that was widely ridiculed and he has since apologized for.
According to the New York Times’ Christine Emba, “Dear Republicans: Could you just … stop?”
“There have been hints of the existence of ‘exonerating evidence’ since the beginning of the week, and Thursday night, we all got to see the GOP’s latest defense: A prominent Kavanaugh supporter presented the astonishing theory that perhaps Professor Christine Blasey Ford had been assaulted, but by someone else — someone who just looked like Kavanaugh, yet wasn’t the man himself,” Emba wrote before passing judgment, with: “Not to be rude, but this is insane.”
“The 26-tweet [Whelan] thread is preposterous beyond parody — and has raised the question of defamation to boot (Whelan’s disclaimers notwithstanding). To make matters worse, it was swiftly rebutted by Ford herself,” she continued. “And by the next morning, Whelan had issued a sort-of retraction, saying he had made an ‘appalling and inexcusable mistake of judgment’ — not in airing the ridiculous theory in the first place, just by posting it in a way that identified Kavanaugh’s classmate.”
“Guys, do you really want to keep doing this? You’re not helping your case,” Emba patronizingly asked. “A majority of women, already skeptical of Kavanaugh’s conservative positions, are enraged at how callously Ford has been treated. Combine that with what could be an Anita Hill-esque hearing and the shadow of a president famous for “grabbing them by the p———y” (maybe throw in the ignominy of a certain Roy Moore to boot), and Republicans might lose that segment of the electorate for a generation — definitely for the midterms. In the #MeToo era, the GOP will have definitively become the anti-female party. With all due respect: Are you sure you’ve thought this through?”
Emba then offered some friendly advice.
“More voters now oppose Kavanaugh’s Supreme Court nomination than support it, according to the most recent NBC News-Wall Street Journal poll. And there are other less tainted candidates waiting in the wings. So why keep this going?” she asked before imploring, “Look, Republicans, I get it: You tried. But for all our sakes, could you consider giving it a rest?”
You can read the whole piece here.