Why the extent of Kavanaugh’s youthful drinking matters

In categorically denying that he sexually assaulted Christine Blasey Ford more than 30 years ago, Brett Kavanaugh not only outrageously attacked his accusers as part of a vast left-wing conspiracy bent on avenging the Clintons.

He also insisted he never, ever had so much to drink that his memory of carousing was lost in total or in part.


It’s an assertion the FBI should have probed as it reinvestigated a previously unexplored patch of his personal history.

This is not a temperance inquisition; it is a crucial credibility test.

“That never happened,” he told Fox News when asked if he ever consumed so much alcohol that he forgot some or all of the previous night. When Sen. Amy Klobuchar put the same question to him last week, Kavanaugh, under oath, shot back: “I don’t know. Have you?” Separately, he testified that he had never “blacked out,” that “that’s the allegation,” and “that’s wrong.”

Actually, that’s not the allegation. Ford, in her initial letter, claimed that the night she says Kavanaugh attacked her, he was “highly inebriated.” In her Senate testimony, she said Kavanaugh was “visibly drunk.”

The accuracy or persistence of memory is not defined by whether or not one literally lost consciousness. Millions of people who had two or three too many have been confronted, the morning after, with revelations of behavior they retrospectively regret.

Ford tells a detailed story about who assaulted her and how, although she doesn’t remember everything about the incident.

As nonpartisan investigators gathered string, they should have heard from high school and college classmates who say Kavanaugh was frequently inebriated, and who can characterize his behavior toward the opposite sex when severely under the influence.

Let no one pretend the fact that a young man was drunk, or even very drunk very often, settles the question of whether he ever tried to hurt anyone.


But in lieu of physical evidence, and faced with a woman’s persuasive account of being victimized, and given Kavanaugh’s unequivocal denials, the public and the Senate must have the facts necessary to make a difficult integrity judgment.

— New York Daily News

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