Senate Democrats are privately acknowledging that they plan to avoid using Kavanaugh-like tactics against current President Donald Trump nominee Amy Coney Barrett because they think it hurt them in the 2018 midterm elections that occurred just weeks after the contentious confirmation hearings.
A report by The Hill quoted one unnamed senator as saying, “I’m sick and tired of losing. We had a Kavanaugh 1.0, which has informed people’s approach this time.”
“We’re not going to go down that road again. People know what happened to Joe Donnelly, they know what happened to Claire McCaskill and they know what happened to [former Sen.] Heidi Heitkamp,” the senator said.
While the House gained enough Democrats for Republicans to lose their majority there in 2018, the Senate gained Republican seats. The bruising Kavanaugh hearings were credited by some as being a major factor in those losses.
Manchin weighs in
Joe Manchin (WV) was the only Democrat senator to vote to confirm Kavanaugh. He said he hopes the Senate can avoid what is now seen as the ugliness that characterized Kavanaugh’s confirmation hearings, where several Democrat senators produced women who accused Kavanaugh of sexual harassment and rape without any evidence to support their stories.
I would hope all my colleagues … have a civil, have a really professional, decent, honorable, respectable hearing, that’s all. And get to the points,” he said.
Manchin called the Kavanaugh hearings a “fiasco” and echoed the sentiment that senators were voted out for their actions toward the nominee.
“That vote cost, I think, a few of our colleagues their jobs,” he said.
Another Democrat, John Tester (MT), said his poll numbers dropped after the Kavanaugh hearings and hoped his fellow Democrats would be more disciplined this time around, The Hill reported.
“I do think there needs to be a plan going into [this] on what you want to accomplish,” he said.
“They do need to do a better job of distributing power, including Schumer,” he added, referring to Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer (D-NY). “And this is going to be an opportunity for them to do that because this is a very important thing.”
So far, left-wing activists and media figures have focused mainly on Barrett’s religious beliefs, and one has suggested that her Haitian adoptions be investigated because they might be illegal.