Published: Sun, October 07, 2018
Worldwide | By Lisa Hogan

Once a Kavanaugh fan, former Justice John Paul Stevens withdraws support

Once a Kavanaugh fan, former Justice John Paul Stevens withdraws support

Chief Justice John G. Roberts, Jr., administered the Constitutional Oath and retired Associate Justice Anthony M. Kennedy administered the Judicial Oath in a private ceremony later today in the Justices' Conference Room at the Supreme Court.

Brett Kavanaugh denies sexual assault allegations in testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee. The incident allegedly took place when they were both in high school.

"I think the senators should pay attention to that", Stevens said.

Stevens was referring to Kavanaugh's angry statement last Thursday in which he accused Democrats of waging a smear campaign to derail his confirmation.

"I've never been a political person", he added. During the hearing, some of Kavanaugh's testimony appeared blatantly political - in one instance he called the handling of the accusation "a calculated and orchestrated political hit".

"I've changed my views for reasons that have really no relationship to his intellectual ability or his record as a federal judge", Stevens said. In the past several weeks, he has been accused of engaging in gang rapes and sexual misconduct dating back more than three decades - claims that he has denied and that the Federal Bureau of Investigation, in a supplemental inquiry concluded earlier this week, could not corroborate.

"I think that that institution has hurt the court a lot, and may continue to do so", Sotomayor said.

Stevens says that the courts have been unable to restore the nation's confidence that it is an impartial referee.

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan said the court could find itself without a swing vote in the coming years and risk losing legitimacy in the eyes of the public.

Speaking to an audience of retirees in Boca Raton, Florida, Stevens, 98, said Kavanaugh's performance during a recent Senate confirmation hearing suggested he lacks the temperament for the job. "There's nothing that Clarence did in the hearings that disqualified him from sitting in cases after he came on the court", Justice Stevens said.

Since his retirement, Stevens has penned a handful of opinion pieces for the New York Times calling for dramatic liberal reform. Nine others were arrested on the fourth floor of Dirksen Senate Office Building.

Kavanaugh had spent more than three years working for Ken Starr, the independent counsel who investigated Democratic President Bill Clinton in the 1990s.

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