Following the conclusion of the FBI investigation into the allegations against Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh and last week’s emotional testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee, Interfaith Alliance called on Judge Kavanaugh to withdraw his name from consideration. In a statement today, Rabbi Jack Moline, president of Interfaith Alliance, explained the decision, which breaks with organizational precedent to not support or oppose nominees for government positions:
“Interfaith Alliance calls on Judge Brett Kavanaugh to withdraw his acceptance of the nomination for the good of the country and the good of the United States Supreme Court.
“Though he has made clear that he is ‘not a quitter,’ he has also claimed to have the best interests of the country ahead of his own. Surely, he can understand that, at this point, the well has been poisoned and his service on the bench would be inevitably tainted.
“As a matter of principle, Interfaith Alliance does not endorse or oppose nominees for government positions. When Judge Kavanaugh was nominated by President Donald Trump to fill the vacancy on the Supreme Court, we raised questions about his judicial standards and attitudes about the First Amendment, some of which were addressed by the Senate Judiciary Committee. Though we were disappointed in most of his answers, we nonetheless refrained from suggestion to our supporters and to elected officials a specific course of action; we are of the firm belief that speaking in the name of faith on such decisions is contrary to our mission.
“Now, however, we are faced with a different set of issues. Judge Kavanaugh’s alleged conduct toward girls and women and his habits regarding alcohol consumption raised questions about his fitness for the bench. His belligerent testimony before the Judiciary Committee on these subjects was understandable from a man made uncomfortable by public scrutiny of his past behavior but crossed a line into a political rant that raises questions about his impartiality in future cases.
“We had hoped that a formal FBI investigation would offer a comprehensive picture of Judge Kavanaugh’s conduct and not merely a narrowly-conceived inquiry into aspects of a particular incident. The wealth of representations from former and current friends and associates paints an inconsistent picture of his temperament, judgment and, unfortunately, honesty. We cannot support the confirmation of a Supreme Court Justice who has demonstrated a pattern of playing fast and loose with the truth for his own benefit.
“Should Judge Kavanaugh decline to withdraw, we encourage the members of the Senate to take these matters to heart and act in the best interests of the judiciary and the people of the United States.”
Interfaith Alliance celebrates religious freedom by championing individual rights, promoting policies that protect both religion and democracy, and uniting diverse voices to challenge extremism. Founded in 1994, Interfaith Alliance brings together members from 75 faith traditions as well as those without a faith tradition to protect faith and freedom. For more information visit www.interfaithalliance.org.