Kavanaugh Responds to Gambling Addiction Accusations, Sort ofPhotos by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Politics News Brett Kavanaugh
Earlier this week, we reported on Supreme Court pick and amateur BS-er Brett Kavanaugh’s, possible gambling issues. Suspicions arose when it was reported that Kavanaugh accrued large amounts of debt buying baseball tickets, combined with evidence suggesting his debts outweighed his personal assets. Kavanaugh tried to wave accusations away by saying he frequently bought season tickets to Washington Nationals games for his friends, who would pay him back later.
Vox provided some more information about this development Thursday morning in a document covering over 1,000 Senate questions, to which Kavanaugh provided written answers. After some digging, you’ll come across the section where Senator Sheldon Whitehouse grills Kavanaugh about his history with gambling and, inevitably, the baseball tickets. Even though the entire report is massive, it’s easy to find; just skim for “Please see my response to Question 11.” Kavanaugh responds to the first question about gambling and debt, then uses that as his answer all the way through Question 23. This includes Question 12, with parts A through M.
The dead horse of a response he keeps beating, which is eight paragraphs long, somehow doesn’t answer any of those questions. One of the paragraphs is literally just a list of home repairs, which he justifies by saying, “Maintaining a house, especially an old house like ours, can be expensive. I have not had gambling debts or participated in “fantasy” leagues.” Later, he goes to address his obsession with sports, as well as the Nationals tickets in question. His version of refuting the gambling accusations follows: “I have attended a couple of hundred regular season games. As is typical with baseball season tickets, I had a group of old friends who would split games with me. We would usually divide the tickets in a “ticket draft” at my house. Everyone in the group paid me for their tickets based on the cost of the tickets, to the dollar. No one overpaid or underpaid me for tickets. No loans were given in either direction.”
Actually analyzing Kavanugh’s response in regards to his copy-and-paste answer is troubling. When Whitehouse asks Kavanaugh how he paid off debts between $60,000 and $200,000 in 2017, Kavanaugh basically responds by saying that he never had debt. In regards to “meaningful increases in liabilities,” Kavanaugh says he and his wife received “a significant annual salary increase for federal judges.” Kavanaugh is asked to provide dates of reimbursement for the tickets, but refuses to. As a federal judge, he even received $150,000 as a lump sum from the government, but there’s no record of what he did with the money. He’s not interested in telling anyone, either.
Though he denies having gambling debts, Kavanaugh fails to explain the accusations and the numbers themselves beyond a dismissive “nuh-uh.”