The Slatest

Trump Apologizes to Kavanaugh “on Behalf of Our Nation,” Says He Was “Proven Innocent”

President Donald Trump puts his hand on Supreme Court Associate Justice Brett Kavanaugh's shoulder during his ceremonial swearing in in the East Room of the White House on October 8, 2018 in Washington, D.C.
President Donald Trump puts his hand on Supreme Court Associate Justice Brett Kavanaugh’s shoulder during his ceremonial swearing in in the East Room of the White House on Monday.
Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

President Donald Trump used a ceremonial swearing-in of Brett Kavanaugh as the newest justice on the Supreme Court to apologize and once again discredit women who alleged they were victims of sexual assault. “On behalf of our nation, I want to apologize to Brett and the entire Kavanaugh family for the terrible pain and suffering you have been forced to endure. Those who step forward to serve our country deserve a fair and dignified evaluation, not a campaign of personal and political destruction based on lies and deception,” Trump said Monday evening in the East Room of the White House.

In a room with all the other Supreme Court justices present, the commander in chief went on to say that the confirmation process Kavaugh went through “violates every notion of fairness, decency, and due process.” He also address Kavanaugh directly: “You, sir, under historic scrutiny, were proven innocent.”

This marked the second time in the day that Trump sought to discredit the women who had come forward to speak up about Kavanaugh. Earlier in the day, Trump told reporters Kavanaugh’s nomination “was caught up in a hoax that was set up by the Democrats, using the Democrats’ lawyers.” In case there was any doubt what Trump actually thought, he made his view clear: “It was all made up, it was fabricated, and it’s a disgrace.”

After Trump made sure to turn the Monday evening event into a Republican celebration by thanking several key leaders, Kavanaugh proceeded to thank the commander in chief before shifting gears and vowing that he wouldn’t be partisan as a justice. “Every American can be assured that I will be an independent and impartial justice,” Kavanaugh said. “I was not appointed to serve one party or one interest, but one nation.”