Some have managed to find it in themselves to push the confirmation to the U.S. Supreme Court of a man credibly accused of attempted rape. There are other issues with President Donald Trump’s SCOTUS pick Brett Kavanaugh, too, like his record on gun control (or the lack thereof). Alaska’s governor and lieutenant governor drew together some of these concerns in a statement they released Thursday asserting their opposition to the judge.
Their focuses include protecting access to health care, protecting the rights of indigenous people, and the aforementioned story of Kavanaugh perpetrating an attempted rape.
Governor Bill Walker (I) and Lieutenant Governor Byron Mallott (D) explained:
‘One of our top priorities as Governor and Lieutenant Governor is expanding affordable healthcare access to all Alaskans… Key aspects of our nation’s healthcare and labor laws may be at risk if Mr. Kavanaugh receives a lifetime appointment.’
Alaska’s governor and Lt Gov — an Independent/Dem combo — come out against confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh pic.twitter.com/xnGqthFKUC
— Nick Riccardi (@NickRiccardi) September 20, 2018
They explained that they’ve supported two major provisions of the Affordable Care Act, otherwise known as ObamaCare. Those measures include protections for people with pre-existing conditions and an expansion of the pool of people eligible for Medicaid, the latter of which has proven an especially high profile and hot button issue across the country. As the implementation of the law developed, actually expanding that pool was left up to each individual state, so predictably, those with more left leaning governments went along with ObamaCare while Republicans resisted.
Walker and Mallott might anticipate that future battles over the nation’s health care system yet again make it to the U.S. Supreme Court, although at present, the GOP as a whole is focusing their energy outside of their longstanding aims to repeal ObamaCare.
Kavanaugh, though, has made his positions clear in the meantime. Democratic U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse of Rhode Island, for instance, revealed during the nominee’s contentious public confirmation hearings that Kavanaugh had privately insisted that he could not commit to voting in favor of the ACA’s protection for people with pre-existing conditions.
Kavanaugh has also refused to get behind the legality of abortion, which has remained a high profile issue throughout his confirmation battle. He’s decried the legalization of the procedure in the first place, and activists have been concerned by Trump’s own past promise to appoint Supreme Court justices who would outlaw abortion, at least at the federal level. To be clear, the demise of Roe v. Wade is not acutely and definitely on the horizon, but its aura is an elephant in the room.
Then there’s the issue of Christine Blasey Ford’s story of an attempted rape at Kavanaugh’s hands.
Walker and Mallott commented:
‘Finally, we believe a thorough review of past allegations against Kavanaugh is needed before a confirmation vote takes place. Violence against women in Alaska is an epidemic. We do not condone placing someone into one of our nation’s highest positions of power while so many key questions remain unanswered.’
Whether Republican and U.S. Senator from Alaska Lisa Murkowski condones that remains to be seen. The political figure, who is often taken as an occasional swing vote in the Senate thanks to supposed moderate leanings, has not yet made her position on the nominee clear.
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