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Congress is poised to make a decision that will set a formal tone as to this country’s attitude towards the sexual assault of women.
Judge Brett M. Kavanaugh is President Trump’s current supreme court nominee, he is also facing numerous sexual assault accusations stemming from when he was in high school.
Last Friday, the Senate Judiciary Committee was planning on voting to approve Kavanaugh and move the vote to the senate floor. But minutes before the committee was set to vote, Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley, known for his punctuality, left the room. The vote was set for 2:30 p.m., which came and went quickly as the Capitol awaited the committee members’ return.
Around 3 p.m. Arizona Senator Jeff Flake (R) entered the room. He was visibly disturbed after being held up in an elevator by women who said they had been sexually assaulted. They clearly had an impact on Flake as one of them broke into tears half way through her rant.
The women expressed the sentiment that they had been sexually assaulted and they feel like if Brett Kavanaugh is approved, then Congress is telling victims across the country that they may as well not report their attackers because it’s meaningless.
Flake ended up voting affirmatively on Kavanaugh in the committee vote, but he attached the contingency that the FBI should be given a week to investigate the accusations. That week ends Friday.
The fact that these unproven accusations have had the affect they have begs questions. Questions like are accusations enough to deny someone a spot on the supreme court? And how well has congress handled the situation? Here’s what Valencia students have to say:
“I believe with how he has reacted and genuinely how he has tried to avoid any FBI investigation is very shady,” says Alexander Andino, 18 year old musical theatre major. “And I don’t think that someone who isn’t open enough to do that about a case that he says never happened should be on the US supreme court.”
“I think that they’ve [handled the situation] very professionally,” explains Andino. “I think that they have asked all of the right questions. In regards to the interviews and the court hearings and all of that I do believe that they should go harder on the FBI investigation.”
“The reactions of Brett Kavanaugh on the trial is just completely atrocious,” says Camila Lara, 17 year old undecided student. She went on to express that she feels congress has handled the situation “very poorly, they just politicize it too much between the parties and the complete disregard to humanitarian issues.”
“100% because,” says Ahmad Altaher Alfayadin, 17 year old political science major. “In order to maintain the integrity of the highest court in the United States there shouldn’t be a judge who has numerous sexual assault allegations against him.”
“It can really ruin a reputation not to mention for him working with the white house, but for me I feel as though he has enough evidence to actually like cover himself but the other women don’t,” says Andrew T Wallis, a 22 year old law enforcement and homeland security agent.
Wallis went on to say, “I think some of them feel as though he might’ve done it but I’ll give it to him one thing Graham is actually like really backin’ him up saying that he didn’t, and he’s been working for a very long time so I don’t see why he wouldn’t be innocent.”
Leena Issa contributed to this story.