America, a weekly Roman Catholic magazine published by members of the Jesuit religious order, on Thursday rescinded its endorsement of Brett Kavanaugh after the Senate hearing on an attempted sexual assault accusation leveled against him by Christine Blasey Ford.
“Even if the credibility of the allegation has not been established beyond a reasonable doubt and even if further investigation is warranted to determine its validity or clear Judge Kavanaugh’s name, we recognize that this nomination is no longer in the best interests of the country,” wrote the editors of the magazine, which is the product of the same Catholic religious order that runs Kavanaugh’s high school alma mater, Georgetown Prep.
“While we previously endorsed the nomination of Judge Kavanaugh on the basis of his legal credentials and his reputation as a committed textualist, it is now clear that the nomination should be withdrawn.”
The magazine said that while Judge Kavanaugh may be entitled the presumption of innocence under a legal standard, such a high bar was not the requirement in this case.
“Dr. Blasey’s accusations have neither been fully investigated nor been proven to a legal standard, but neither have they been conclusively disproved or shown to be less than credible,” they wrote. “If Senate Republicans proceed with his nomination, they will be prioritizing policy aims over a woman’s report of an assault.”
In its original endorsement, the magazine had once been firmly in the judge’s corner, citing his presumed hostility to abortion rights.
“At this juncture, anyone who recognizes the humanity of the unborn should support the nomination of a justice who would help return this issue to the legislative arena,” the magazine wrote in July. “Overturning Roe would save lives and undo a moral and constitutional travesty.”
On the same day America magazine rescinded its endorsement, both Kavanaugh and his accuser offered dueling testimony to the Senate Judiciary Committee. Over nine hours, both delivered sharply different accounts in passionate and raw statements.
Ford accused Kavanaugh of trying to rape her at a party while drunk at a party during the early 1980s. The judge angrily insisted that he had never acted in such a manner and had never been at the party in question.
Late on Thursday, the American Bar Association also called on the Judiciary Committee to delay its consideration of Kavanaugh until the FBI completed an investigation of Ford’s accusations.