2018 FBI Background check on Kavanaugh may have been fake

FBI did not talk to him or Ford . That seems really dumb to skip both of them

IIRC I said so at the time. Very glad that they’re taking another look at this.

If it was a sham ( I’m seeing multiple articles indicating this ) can he be removed because of it? Another article indicates that he showed significant debt on his disclosures, all of which were paid in full prior to his swearing in. No sources for all of this money have ever been disclosed by Kavanaugh.


My guess is that he cannot be removed, not unless they go through the process of impeachment.

No. There is no requirement in the Constitution or federal law that makes service on the Supreme Court contingent on a “proper” FBI background check, or provision for removal on the basis that such a check was a “sham”.

He was nominated by the sitting President. He was confirmed by a majority vote of the Senate. That’s it. That’s the requirement for the office he holds.

Just like any Federal officer, he can be impeached and removed, for “high crimes and misdemeanors”. Of course, that would take a 2/3 vote in the Senate, which Republicans would be unlikely to go along with.

lower federal judges have been impeached and removed. One of them has been in Congress for a long time.

And one could argue that even if the FBI investigation was deliberately mishandled, it’s not a crime he committed.

That’s true, but what can be done now is a proper background investigation. Many of us suspected that the original one was basically a whitewash.

Indeed. If the FBI check was, indeed, a sham, then there might well be some manner of disciplinary action (if not criminal charges) against those who were responsible.

But, the only way I can see it having an effect on Kavanaugh’s position now is if it comes out that the FBI had clear evidence of criminal activity by Kavanaugh (or that such clear evidence would have undoubtedly been uncovered by a diligent background check), and that the crime was so repugnant that even Republicans couldn’t stomach it – and, remember, Republicans were unwilling to believe the accusations of sexual assault during the confirmation hearing, so there would need to be an incontrovertible smoking gun.

Even then, there would likely be those who would argue that impeachment is inappropriate, since a crime committed before he was appointed to the Court isn’t a relevant “high crime and misdemeanor.” What would be more likely* would be that he would be pressured to resign.

*- by “more likely,” I mean “more likely than impeachment.” I think it’s incredibly unlikely in the absolute.

Can he be tried/convicted of perjury? Then the Republicans can refuse to “convict” at an impeachment trial a man who’s sitting in a jail cell.

Here’s part 1 of a 5-part series on Kavanaugh and how he might be replaced or coaxed into stepping down that is pretty interesting:

I don’t know how one determines a background investigation is a ‘fake’ but it was as obvious as day that Kavanaugh had not been vetted. I don’t recall the FBI ever claiming that they had fully vetted Kavanaugh, though. It was the WH and Kav’s enablers in the Senate who ordered the Code Rape.

There’s almost no chance of him being removed, but a real investigation should still take place. The American people should know what kind of person was nominated and confirmed to SCOTUS.

Sure. Assuming he was under oath during his confirmation hearings (and I can’t believe that he wasn’t), and if it can be proven in a court of law that he lied, he’d be criminally liable for perjury under 18 U.S. Code § 1621, with a maximum sentence of five years.

Even if he wasn’t under oath, 18 U.S. Code § 1001 provides the same penalties for lying to Congress, although that’s worded in such a way that it’s not clear to me that it would apply to testimony in a confirmation hearing. But, again, I can’t imagine he wasn’t under oath during his hearings.

Just by the way, the Justice Department’s SOP is not to open cases for lying to Congress until Congress requests it, and there have only been a handful of prosecutions for it since World War II.

I don’t think he’s beyond impeachment if he faked his way through a nomination. I realize that’s not an opinion shared by a lot of people, but Christ, imagine having a guy like Kavanaugh co-author a majority 5-4 opinion that, say, undermines title IX. If we get to the point where we really believe that the judiciary is nothing more than an extension of bad partisan politics, then the escalation of that is that the executive starts ignoring court rulings, which I think would be a terrible precedent and path to embark on, even if it’s a Democrat who does it for seemingly noble reasons.

What an alarming notion. The FBI doesn’t investigate U.S. citizens just to satisfy the curiosity of the public. An investigation made sense when his nomination was under consideration, but short of a credible accusation of crime for which the statue of limitations hasn’t passed, what on earth would justify an investigation now? Should we similarly redo the investigation into any other federal officials to let the American people know what kind of people they are?

I’m no fan of Kavanaugh, but this idea just reeks of politicizing the Justice Department. I was hoping we were done with that now.

The same exact reason it was appropriate before, seeing as said investigation was apparently not carried out. Thus the investigation would be the one that should have occurred in the first place.

To make an analogy: let’s say your kid claimed they cleaned their room to be allowed to go to a party. You find out they lied and didn’t clean their room. Do you say that, since they already went to the party, they no longer have to clean their room? Of course not.

If you lie about doing something you were supposed to, obviously part of the remedy will be, if possible, actually doing that thing you were supposed to do. That’s a basic part of remediation.

In fact, this is so blatantly obvious that I see your post as the political one. Why else would you be trying to argue that lying is a legitimate way of getting out of having to do something?

Plus, frankly, why wouldn’t we want to know the background of every single person in a position of power in government? You’re acting like this is a horrible thing, and not just, you know the norm. That’s why we vet everyone. We want to know about potential conflicts of interest and about their character.

It doesn’t have to be, and perhaps shouldn’t be, the DoJ. Congress can do it with its oversight authority - both of the FBI (executive branch) and SCOTUS. To determine if the FBI deliberately sabotaged their own investigation, why, and what they were afraid they might find.

Not alarming at all. Read what @BigT wrote. I completely agree with it.

As for the “US citizens” bit, the FBI doesn’t investigate anybody “just to satisfy the curiosity of the public”. But OTOH, being a citizen is not immunity against being accountable for crimes, nor against being held to high standards when holding a position of high responsibility. At the absolute rock-bottom minimum, if there is to be a shred of justice in the world, if the FBI was directed to do a whitewash instead of an actual investigation, this needs to be known and those responsible need to be held accountable.

That aside, it would also be kind of nice to have some confirmation one way or the other of the character of a justice of the Supreme Court whom many believe is highly suspect. And only a bona fide investigation can do that.

This raises some interesting hypothetical questions. If a SCOTUS justice committed a sufficiently-serious crime to go to jail, but was not impeached (at least not right away), presumably the jail would be forced to accommodate his job. They would probably have to place a private room and phone at his disposal, so that he could participate in court arguments.