Sexual Assault Survivors, Allies to Demand Senators Oppose Supreme Court Nominee

October 4, 2018

WASHINGTON — Sexual assault survivors and activists from Alaska, Nebraska, West Virginia, Colorado, and Maine will descend on Capitol Hill today to share their stories directly with senators and join the call for their senators to vote “no” on the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court. 

Advocates will meet with the offices of Sens. Deb Fischer (R-Neb.), Cory Gardner (R-Colo.), Joe Manchin (D-W.V.), Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.V.), and Ben Sasse (R-Neb.). More than 100 Alaskans have flown in to meet with the offices of Sens. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) and Dan Sullivan (R-Alaska). 

As part of their participation in the day of action organized by the American Civil Liberties Union and partner organizations, the activists will also participate in a rally at 12:30 pm today where recording artist Milck is expected to perform. Activists will march to the Supreme Court from Brett Kavanaugh’s current courthouse, the D.C Circuit Court of Appeals.

“Dr. Christine Blasey Ford, in a courageous act of civic duty, came forward and told her members of Congress about her sexual assault at the hands of Brett Kavanaugh,” said Jodie Morgenson, a resident of Lincoln, Nebraska. “Now it’s my turn to fulfill my civic duty and urge Senators Fischer and Sasse to not let Dr. Ford’s voice, and the voices of many more women like her, go silenced.”

Thursday’s activities are part of an ongoing advocacy campaign that includes nearly 30,000 constituent calls to senators urging opposition to Kavanaugh’s nomination; a rally in Boston that drew thousands of activists for Sen. Jeff Flake’s (R-Ariz.) visit to the city; and grassroots organizing from ACLU affiliates nationwide. The campaign also includes a seven-figure TV ad buy in Nebraska, Colorado, West Virginia, and Alaska with spots running through the end of the week.

“Together, the power of the people saved health care protections for women, won the net neutrality vote in the Senate, initiated the Mueller probe, and held Trump accountable for his family separation crisis,” said ACLU National Political Director Faiz Shakir. “These same people are now joining forces to demand their senators stop the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh. If senators fail them here, America will remember in November.”

The national campaign comes after the ACLU’s national board took the extraordinary step of suspending its organizational policy of not supporting or opposing candidates for political or judicial office, choosing to oppose Kavanaugh’s nomination. The board’s decision marks the fourth time in the organization’s 98-year history that it has chosen to oppose a nominee to the Supreme Court. Most recently, the organization did not endorse or oppose the nomination of Justice Neil Gorsuch.

“Standing against sexual assault isn’t partisan,” said Shakir. “We, like the vast majority of Americans, worry about what this nomination will do to the administration of justice in this country. Senators should be concerned as well.”

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