Week Ahead: Kavanaugh Confirmed, Sworn In -- And What Comes Next

Oct 8, 2018

With Meghna Chakrabarti

Top reporters help us look ahead to the week’s news.


Dick Polman, national political reporter and writer of the Natural Interest blog at member station WHYY. He’s also a former political reporter and columnist at the Philadelphia Inquirer, and is the writer in residence at the Center for Programs in Contemporary Writing at the University of Pennsylvania. (@DickPolman1)

Paula Reid, CBS News correspondent covering the Justice Department, the White House and legal affairs. (@PaulaReidCBS)

Sahil Kapur, national political reporter for Bloomberg Politics. (@sahilkapur)

From The Reading List

NPR: “A Quick Look At Brett Kavanaugh, The New Supreme Court Justice” — “Justice Brett Kavanaugh became the newest associate justice of the Supreme Court when he was sworn in Saturday evening.

“On Tuesday morning, he will sit to the left of Justice Elena Kagan, in the most junior spot on the high court’s bench, and will hear arguments in three criminal cases before the court.

“Here’s a quick look at some key information about Kavanaugh as he begins his lifetime appointment to the court.”

Vox: “Susan Collins says she doesn’t think Kavanaugh was Ford’s assailant” — “Now that Brett Kavanaugh has been confirmed to the Supreme Court, some Republicans seem to feel freer saying what they really think about the sexual assault allegations against him brought by Palo Alto University professor Christine Blasey Ford: They don’t believe them.

“Maine Republican Sen. Susan Collins, an important swing vote on Kavanaugh who ultimately supported him, said in an appearance on CNN’s State of the Union aired on Sunday that she found Ford’s testimony to be ‘heart-wrenching, painful, compelling.’ adding, ‘I believe that she believes what she testified to.’

“Collins, however, did not.”

Wall Street Journal: “GOP Muscles Kavanaugh Through Senate” — “The moment California college professor Christine Blasey Ford finished her testimony about an alleged sexual assault in the 1980s by Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, Republicans realized his confirmation was at serious risk.

“In the White House, aides gathered in Vice President Mike Pence’s office in the Senate Dirksen Building were ‘demoralized,’ officials said. The same sense of dread spread in the Senate, as lawmakers texted each other about their concerns. ‘Honestly, I think had the hearing stopped right then, if he had not testified, he would not be confirmed today,’ said Sen. Bob Corker (R., Tenn.).

“‘I thought “Oh my goodness, he perhaps needs to withdraw,” ‘ said Sen. Susan Collins (R., Maine), who would later play a crucial role in his confirmation.

“Judge Kavanaugh’s emotional, politically charged and combative defense on Sept. 27 that followed Dr. Ford’s appearance was enough to reassure most of the Senate GOP caucus, but it wasn’t enough to secure his confirmation. It would take Republicans another week of slow deliberations to win over the small handful of swing votes who would determine Judge Kavanaugh’s fate.”

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit