One of Kavanaugh’s lies that I find peculiarly exasperating, especially from a lawyer:

BRETT KAVANAUGH: Dr. Ford’s allegation is not merely uncorroborated. It is refuted by the very people she says were there, including by a longtime friend of hers – refuted.

But that’s bullshit and any lawyer would know that.

Most simply and obviously it’s bullshit because the people he’s talking about didn’t even say that, they said only what is reasonable: that they don’t remember it. How would they remember it? They weren’t there, remember? They were in the house but they were not in the room. They were downstairs in the living room, while the assault Ford describes happened upstairs in a bedroom with the door closed. Ford tried to scream but Kavanaugh stifled her mouth so hard she had trouble breathing and was afraid she would die. The music in the bedroom was turned up. When she escaped Ford locked herself in the bathroom until Kavanaugh and Judge careened, laughing, back downstairs, and then she left the house. She didn’t pause to tell everyone present what had just happened; she didn’t tell anyone. So the people there were not in a position to remember the assault that they never knew about in the first place.

Almost as obvious is the fact that saying you don’t remember a thing is not the same as refuting that thing. Not at all, and it’s a crucial distinction, and no lawyer could possibly not know that. No rational adult human should be unaware of that.

Less obvious is that it would be hard for anyone involved to refute Ford’s allegation in any case. Dispute, yes, reject, yes, but refute – that’s a higher burden. It’s hard for her to establish it, because it was so long ago and because she’s unsure about date and place, and it’s hard to refute for the same and related reasons. It would need an exact time and place and irrefutable evidence that Kavanaugh was somewhere else at that time.

And he’s a lawyer. He knows it’s bullshit to say her friends refuted her allegations because they said they don’t remember – but he also knows people are sloppy about these distinctions and he can probably get away with it. The truth is that uncorroborated is what it is, and refuted is not.

And he’ll probably be on the Supreme Court soon.

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