Published in TIME
The wild card in Kavanaugh’s effect on the court, and America, is his own effort to move past the confirmation hearings. Unlike others who have been accused of past sexual abuse in the #metoo era, he has a lifetime appointment to a position of power from which to try, and already he is using his spot on the court to do so. Rather than always sign on anonymously to his colleagues’ rulings, for example, he has issued multiple concurring opinions, laying out his thinking in ways first term justices don’t often do.
For many, nothing he does on or off the court will change the judgment they have already rendered. The confirmation hearings were a torment for Blasey Ford. She says she never wanted to testify, and that her life has been upended by the public airing of the suffering she had carried for years. “Having Brett Kavanaugh on the Supreme Court, with allegations of sexual misconduct still very fresh in the public’s mind, strikes millions of Americans as a dagger through the heart,” says Nan Aron, founder of liberal judicial advocacy group Alliance for Justice.