On Sunday morning, former presidential candidate, first lady and secretary of state Hillary Clinton took to Twitter to urge people to participate in nationwide protests organized by pro-choice and union groups to fight the confirmation of President Donald Trump’s nominee to the Supreme Court, Brett Kavanaugh.
— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) August 26, 2018
Shortly after Kavanaugh was nominated, Clinton slammed Trump’s choice to replace retiring Justice Anthony Kennedy last month in a speech at an American Federation of Teachers’ conference, saying:
This nomination holds out the threat of devastating consequences for workers’ rights, civil rights, LGBT rights, women’s rights…It is a blatant attempt by this administration to shift the balance of the court for decades and to reverse decades of progress. You know I used to worry that they wanted to turn the clock back to the 1950s, now I worry they want to turn it back to the 1850s.
Her forceful opposition to Kavanaugh comes in some contrast to her radio silence on Trump’s previous pick for the court, Neil Gorsuch, who replaced the late Justice Antonin Scalia. Clinton does not seem to have made any public comments on Gorsuch’s nomination, which came shortly after Trump took office. She’s showing no such reserve now, with Kavanaugh set to replace a justice known for showing some moderation on issues such as LGBT and abortion rights.
Clinton might have other reasons for disliking Kavanaugh: He played an instrumental role in Independent Counsel Ken Starr’s investigation into the Clinton real estate deal in Arkansas that ultimately led to impeachment proceedings against her husband. Among other things, Kavanaugh urged Starr to ask President Bill Clinton a host of lewd questions as part of his investigation into Clinton’s affair with Monica Lewinsky.
For his part, Kavanaugh seems to have had no love for Clinton, either. As Mother Jones reported last month:
In those heady days, Kavanaugh traveled in a circle of budding GOP legal eagles, including Fox News host Laura Ingraham, current Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar, and clerks for conservative Supreme Court justices Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas. Kavanaugh’s presence in right-wing political circles landed him a cameo in Blinded by the Right, a book by conservative operative turned Democratic fundraiser David Brock. Brock wrote that during the Whitewater investigation into the Clinton Arkansas real estate deal, he once attended an event at Ingraham’s house to watch one of Clinton’s State of the Union addresses. When the cameras panned to first lady Hillary Clinton during the speech, Brock said he witnessed Kavanaugh mouth the word “bitch.”