Over 1,000 Law Professors Sign Open Letter Opposing Kavanaugh

Professors from elite schools cite concerns about the Trump nominee’s judicial temperament

Last Updated: October 3, 2018 @ 10:34 PM

Citing “a lack of judicial temperament that would be disqualifying for any court,” more than one thousand law professors from elite schools across the country have signed an open letter opposing President Trump’s Supreme Court Nominee Brett Kavanaugh. The letter, published in the New York Times Wednesday night, will be submitted to the U.S. Senate on Thursday.

The letter, citing Kavanaugh’s testimony before the Senate last week, says the judge was “repeatedly aggressive with questioners,” and specifically noted that in his prepared remarks, Kavanaugh condemned the proceedings as a partisan hit job.

Further, the letter says, Kavanaugh responded to questions from senators “in an intemperate, inflammatory and partial manner, as he interrupted and, at times, was discourteous to senators.”

During his testimony on Sept. 28, Kavanaugh said that the accusations of sexual assault made against him were “a calculated and orchestrated political hit” that was “revenge on behalf of the Clintons,” and snapped at questions from Democratic senators, among other things.

The letter goes on to refer to “two statutes governing bias and recusal,” which it says mandates that “judges must step aside if they are at risk of being perceived as or of being unfair.”

“We have differing views about the other qualifications of Judge Kavanaugh. But we are united, as professors of law and scholars of judicial institutions, in believing that he did not display the impartiality and judicial temperament requisite to sit on the highest court of our land,” the letter concludes.

Signatories of the letter include UCLA professor Richard L. Abel, Lea Brilmayer of Yale, CUNY Law School dean Mary Lu Bilek, and Berkeley Law School dean Erwin Chemerinsky, among many others.

A full Senate vote on Kavanaugh’s nomination is expected as early as Friday.