Whether or not you believe the allegations of sexual misconduct against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, it’s safe to say his behavior regarding the allegations doesn’t make a strong case for his innocence.
Former Yale classmate Deborah Ramirez, the second woman to go public with allegations of Kavanaugh’s inappropriate behavior with women, has accused him of exposing himself while at a dorm party in a New Yorker story from Ronan Farrow and Jane Mayer.
Kavanaugh has denied those allegations, as well as those of sexual assault made by Dr. Christine Blasey Ford. During the Senate hearings on Ford’s allegations, he added that he “doesn’t have a specific recollection” of having interacted with Ramirez at a wedding 10 years after that incident allegedly took place.
As the FBI expands the scope of its initially limited investigation into the allegations made against Kavanaugh, though, it seems like he might remember more than he claims.
Texts between two of his other former Yale classmates, Kerry Berchem and Karen Yarasavage, both friends of Kavanaugh, suggest that the Supreme Court nominee had spoken personally with friends about Ramirez’s story before it went public in The New Yorker, as NBC News reports. In one message, Yarasavage says Kavanaugh asked her to go on the record in his defense, and two other messages show correspondence between his team and former classmates in anticipation of the story.
The texts also reveal that Kavanaugh was in possession of a photo from the night of the wedding party that both he and Ramirez had attended, in which Yarasavage was getting married, with Kavanaugh serving as groomsman and Ramirez as bridesmaid. In the texts, Yarasavage told Berchem that Ramirez had “clung to me” and “never went near them,” in reference to Kavanaugh and his friends, and that she was also trying to stay away from him during the group photo in question.
Kavanaugh has sought to distance himself from Ramirez now that her allegations against him have gone public, and much of the skepticism around her and Ford’s allegations has centered on how long ago those incidents of sexual misconduct allegedly took place. But if the jumble of Yale alums newly entering the story makes anything clear, it’s that they very much ran in the same circles well after graduating, and that there certainly has to be a reason why someone like Ramirez would take such efforts to avoid Kavanaugh.
During last week’s Senate hearings, Dr. Ford also memorably said she was “100% certain” that Kavanaugh was the man who assaulted her in high school, and Kavanaugh certainly doesn’t seem like the type to want to forget about his supposed glory days.
Kavanaugh might very well still make it to the Supreme Court despite these now two allegations of sexual misconduct, in which case he’ll be tasked with serving among the country’s leading constitutional interpreters. And while President Trump has taken the appropriate step in ordering an expansion of the FBI investigation on the allegations against Kavanaugh, never forget that Trump has numerous sexual misconduct allegations of his own, and that the Kavanaugh pick was once supposed to be his “classiest move,” at least by the standards of the New York Times opinions page. The signs were already there for anyone who has experienced gaslighting or witnessed the entitlement from the likes of men like Brett Kavanaugh.