LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell made extensive comments Monday morning about the confirmation of Judge Brett Kavanaugh as the newest U.S. Supreme Court Justice over the weekend.
The comments came during a news conference in Louisville. Click here to watch the news conference in its entirety or view it in the player below.
McConnell told reporters that he “couldn’t be prouder” of what he called his Republican colleagues “standing up for the presumption of innocence in this country” when the voted to confirm Kavanaugh.
“Obviously, it was a very big week last week,” he said. “I’m obviously very pleased with the outcome.”
“You had a person’s life being destroyed by unsubstantiated allegations,” he said. “ I felt we owed it to Judge Kavanaugh to vote … imagine what withdrawal would have looked like. It would have looked like conceding to the allegations.”
McConnell said the most difficult part of the hearings for Kavanaugh supporters came immediately after the testimony of Christine Blasey Ford, which he called “very credible.”
“And I did talk to the President after that … we both agreed she was very credible,” he said. He said he told the President that this was “halftime.”
When they heard Kavanaugh’s testimony, he said “everybody felt better.”
McConnell said two things helped to unify Republicans behind Kavanaugh: support for the presumption of innocence and what he called the effort by protestors to “intimidate” Republicans.
“Look, I know the difference between peaceful protesters and” people trying to get in Republicans’ faces and intimidate, McConnell said.
McConnell said he believes Republicans received an “adrenaline shot” that will propel them to greater victories in the upcoming November primaries.
He appeared to dismiss any potential challengers to his position.
“I’m not afraid of a primary,” McConnell said.
“Anybody can file,” he added. “It’s a free country. One thing about being in the job I’m in: You get a lot of slings and arrows.”
As for Kavanaugh’s confirmation to the Supreme Court, he said, “I think it’s the single most important thing I’ve done in my career.”
McConnell said the country would soon recover from the partisan turmoil that had been the Kavanaugh hearings.
“The country is going to be just fine,” he said. “What protects America is the separation of powers. The geniuses who founded this country assumed that people would do the worst thing.”
Near the end of the press conference, a reporter confronted McConnell about his claim that President Trump thought Ford’s testimony was “very credible.” If that was his belief, what did McConnell have to say about a tweet in which Trump appeared to mock Ford?
“I’m trying to think of how many times you’ve tried to get me to comment on presidential comments,” McConnell said. “Good try.”
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