The Democratic Sexual Assault Playbook

So. To hear it from various conservatives on this forum, there is a “playbook” democrats use when presented with conservatives trying to gain power. I believe this post by UltraVires sums it up very well:

Another example, from Shodan:

And just so we’re clear, this isn’t the only place I’ve seen this; see also this Tom Stiglich cartoon, or rather don’t, because it’s pretty awful.

So, just so we’re clear, apparently a major fear by conservatives seems to be that if Brett Kavanaugh is not confirmed to the supreme court, we will see a continuous line of such accusations over and over again for the next judge, or indeed for the next any number of judges put forward by the republican party. That this is about something the democrats are doing to Kavanaugh, rather than about something Kavanaugh did.

Is this a fair assessment of the position being taken here? Is it just UltraVires and Shodan who are taking this position, or is it more widespread among conservatives on the board?

Either way, would anyone care to step up and defend this position? Because, I’m gonna be honest, on the face of it, it’s pretty fucking bizarre. Bizarre and really really harmful.

First of all, how many republicans actually get accused of sexual assault? Well, there’s Trump, who has had 22 women come forward against him and bragged about sexual assault on tape. There’s Roy Moore - but it seems his trawling of the mall for underaged girls was kind of common knowledge. Beyond that, what high-profile cases are there? I mean, if this was a “playbook”, you’d think it would have seen some play in some of the special elections since 2016, or indeed in some of the senate or house races in 2016. Or at least one high-profile case that was definitely false. But… No. Looking at the Wikipedia page, every case thus far seems pretty cut-and-dry, and even then they’re rather few and far between. And they’re not exclusively partisan - there’s a fair share of dems in that list.

Secondly, even if it is a “playbook”, this play has a pretty lousy track record. I feel the need to repeat myself, but Donald Trump openly bragged about how, when you’re rich, you can just do what you want to women, and has been accused of sexual assault by some 22 women. He’s currently the president of the united states; these accusations did not stop him from winning. That one should have been a slam dunk; you had to convince the US population, not a group of republican senators, and you had far more to work with. It didn’t work - Trump won.

Thirdly, the amount of effort that goes into this playbook on the part of the women involved is pretty crazy. I think The Nib puts it well in this cartoon. Let’s recall what happened to Christine Blasey Ford after she came forward with an accusation of sexual assault:

In prepared remarks she is scheduled to deliver to the Senate Judiciary Committee on Thursday, Ford said “my greatest fears have been realized — and the reality has been far worse than what I expected.”

“My family and I have been the target of constant harassment and death threats. I have been called the most vile and hateful names imaginable,” Ford wrote, saying that she and her family were forced to leave their home.

“Since September 16, my family and I have been living in various secure locales, with guards,” Ford said.

This woman was forced to leave her home after some shitbag on twitter doxxed her. Her family has been moving from place to place under guard, lest some nutjob make good on the many, many, many threats they sent her. Most people won’t do that. That’s part of why most rapes go unreported. If we learn anything from #MeToo, the lesson should be that most rape survivors don’t report because they see the odds of getting justice as minuscule and the odds of getting harassed and having to relive that trauma as extremely high.

And for fourth, uh, guys, y’know who’s pretty much bulletproof against accusations of sexual harassment or rape? Women. Pretty big fuckin’ hole in the narrative, there, wouldn’t you think? If republicans nominate a woman to the supreme court, how, exactly, does this “playbook” work out?

So in short: a “playbook” that rarely sees play, with a “play” that rarely works, and, successful or not, costs a woman her safety. Oh, and also it gives people another excuse to ignore allegations of sexual assault, which, as has been quite firmly established lately, is a consistent problem, and to treat those who come forward with claims of sexual assault as partisan attackers, rather than victims. All of this is bad. All of this is really fucking bad. This is a bad take.

Anyone who believes this, feel free, come forward. Defend it. Because if I’ve understood the argument correctly, it’s just completely fucking indefensible. The absolute most charitable way I can interpret this argument is that democrats are using accusations of sexual assault for political gain. But that’s still a really bad argument, because you should use accusations of sexual assault against people, regardless of the politics - people who commit sexual assault should not be in high office.

So what the hell, guys? :mad:

It’s amazing how many judges and other officials have been confirmed over the last two years without Dems “fabricating” charges against even the worst of them.

These posters might as well be yelling “FAkE NeWS!!1!1”

What is the point of this post again? Read it twice and my defective brain cannot deduce. I mean are you saying that improvements are needed in sex crimes case investigations? Right behind you on that.

Are you saying that humans have never accused each other of sexual impropriety for political gain? To that I say, huh? About half of surviving early Imperial Roman writings seems to be on nothing else.

How about the current political era? How many false accusations have been made, as opposed to the true ones?

My point is that one particular narrative currently being pushed, that the democratic party is intentionally farming out false rape accusations against republican candidates, is wrong, harmful, and… yeah.

A word of advice - I went out of my way in the OP to frame this terrible argument as charitably as I could. Maybe you could do the same, rather than blatantly strawmanning me. :slight_smile:

…is “accusing Republicans of sexual assault” something that can be correctly characterized as “part of the Democratic Playbook”?

Or is that characterization a load of complete and utter fucking bollocks?


Sorry, I must confess to being a touch tired of all Kavanaugh, all the time. I swear I know more about teenage Brett K’s sexual and drinking habits than I know of mine.

I don’t think you are going to get much by the way of reasoned discussion. Everyone has taken extreme positions with nothing in the middle. Either he is innocent as driven snow or was Jack the Ripper on the Chesapeake. A vile lying drunkard or a teetotaller.

It didn’t work on Trump, because he is immune to the political laws of physics.

This Democratic playbook exists, but it is something new. That’s why we haven’t seen it before.

The Angry Left have developed a pattern in the last 18 years of deciding that any political outcome they don’t like is an illegitimate outcome. Witness the hysterical, unhinged claims – examples of which can be found on these boards – that Bush “stole” the 2000 election from Gore with the help of the Supreme Court. More recently, we have seen claims that Gorsuch’s seat on SCOTUS was “stolen” from Garland.

When the Senate Democrats decided to abolish the filibuster for nominees, McConnell warned them that they would sooner or later regret that decision. And he said that it might be sooner rather than later. Well, now they’re regretting it. So they’ve decided to up the ante. Dr. Ford is callously being used as a political pawn to stop or at least delay Kavanaugh.

If Kavanaugh withdraws or is rejected by the Senate, it will show the Democrats that this playbook has a high chance of success. And any future conservative nominees will face the exact same thing. Even if their lives are squeaky-clean, the Democrats will find somebody who is willing to commit perjury to hit them with false allegations of sexual misconduct.

Republicans are referencing this nonexistent Democratic “playbook” in an effort to make a case that all accusations of sexual impropriety on the part of Republicans are purely political, thereby avoiding any need to address them on a case-by-case basis. Doesn’t seem that hard to figure out for me.

ETA: as seems to be Flyer’s argument above.

Gorsuch literally went to the same high school. He was nominated first, and arguably the Democrats were (understandably) even more upset about his nomination what with it being stolen and all. Did they not think of this plan until Kavanaugh?

Even if Democrats aren’t “farming out sexual accusations,” as the OP puts it, the belief that they are doing so will make Republicans feel justified in using such a tactic in the future. I wouldn’t be surprised if a 2020 (male) Democratic presidential candidate were accused by several conservative-recruited women of having assaulted them.
It’s an electoral version of The Sum of All Fears: You might not have crossed the nuclear threshold, but if your adversary believes that you did, he may treat you as if you did, and cross the threshold himself.

This is exactly right. They are assimilating Trumpian language. Whenever Trump accuses Democrats of doing something you can be sure that it’s something he’s guilty of himself and he’s deflecting it by turning it 180 degrees. The Republicans are announcing that when they lose power they will have a playbook, and one of the pages in it will be to create utterly false accusations.

It works for Trump, at least with his base who will believe anything he says and hate anything he hates. I’m not so sure that it will work for Congressional Republicans. They don’t have his special sauce. That may deter them. If it doesn’t the political climate will get even worse than today. There is no bottom to what the right will say and do. If Infowars hasn’t convinced you of that, check out Right-Wing Watch for daily examples.

What? What sort of middle ground do you imagine there is when on one side, Kavanaugh is accused of serious sexual assault as well as other misconduct along with a history of heavy drinking to the point of incoherence, and on the other side, he not only presents himself as an angelic paragon of virtue who never did anything wrong, but proclaims this innocence in an unhinged display of spittle-mouthed rage?

What sort of hypothetical reality would create any kind of middle ground? That he did it, but it wasn’t really serious (“boys will be boys”)? That he did it, but forgot about it? That Ford is confusing him with someone else? (That one has been done to death!)


I wouldn’t say that it’s an official strategy in the political realm. Many of the accusations seem to be credible if, and I’m not sure if this is a forbidden sentiment, belated.

Is it that cartoon accurate? Some of the book marked pages are actually tactics used, successfully, here. Such as slander, sexism claims, and false accusations. Where I disagree with that cartoon is lumping in sexual assault accusations as a dishonest tactic because, again, I think there is a lot of credibility in many of these cases.

Wow, a tremendously insightful explanation that I had not thought of before of how there can be a “reasonable middle ground” on this! I stand corrected, and humbled! :smiley:

Okay. Based on…?

Evidence. EVIDENCE. Where is the actual evidence that this is what the democrats are doing here? That this is what they plan to do at all? Why the fuck would Christine Blasey Ford go through all this shit - this shit that always happens to women accusing powerful men of sexual assault? She’s not some hardline partisan, and Kavanaugh isn’t some uniquely awful candidate. Feinstein didn’t find her, Ford came forward of her own volition.

Like, you bring up that some democrats (okay, you broadbrushed it, but let’s be charitable here) have labeled certain wins “illegitimate”. Leaving aside whether or not those wins were legitimate, what does that have to do with this? Why would this have anything to do with this? “Because some democrats consider some republican gains illegitimate, therefore they are trying to illegitimize Kavanaugh, therefore Ford’s testimony a lie brought forward by democratic operatives.”

That’s the line we’re going with here? No part of this logic makes any sense.

Two thoughts. Firstly, last I checked, in the Sum of All Fears, there was some reason to blame the adversary. There was this whole conspiracy, if the plot summary is anything to go off of. Whereas here, the reason the republicans believe that this is enemy effort is because…



Flyer, help me out here, will ya?

Secondly, have you considered the possibility that your side is incredibly fucking evil, and it’s time to repudiate them or work to push back against their worst instincts? Like, the response to a supreme court candidate being accused of rape is to instantly assume that the other side is behind it, and threaten to respond to that threat with accusations you know to be false?


If that was the vibe I was getting from my side, my response would be to burn my side. With fire! That’s not some, “Huh, I guess McConnell is filibustering a bit more than usual” thing, that’s “My side is actually made up predominately of fucking monsters.” Are you okay with that? I wouldn’t be. Nobody should be.

Imagine how catastrophic it would be if the shady Democratic Operatives approached the wrong woman, and she blowed the whistle on this plot. That’s a pretty enormous risk the Democrats are taking. It would backfire tremendously.

Let’s assume the conspiracy theorists are right. Democratic operatives are bribing these women to fabricate false testimony. This is an extremely serious charge if true, and the people behind this conspiracy should be punished, don’t you agree? It’s the sort of thing that an FBI investigation might uncover. Why wouldn’t you want to get to the bottom of this? Why would you oppose a thorough investigation?

Because they don’t really believe this lying bullshit, which is entirely fabricated as red meat for the rabid base. Any last shred of doubt about Republican intentions was removed in the hearings, where anything that seemed like it might lead to factual evidence was blocked by the Republican majority on the committee. Even their own hired gun, who was deployed to try to discredit Dr. Ford, was silenced when it came to questioning Kavanaugh, who got nothing but softball questions and praise from the Pubs, and an Oscar-worthy fact-free performance by Lindsey Graham, auditioning for Team Trump. And of course no FBI investigation, until they were finally put in a corner by Jeff Flake’s conscience. If Truth dared to appear in their midst, these lying fucks would beat her to death and bury her in the back woods.

Hey, if you’re tired of the topic, there’s many other debates and discussions on this board.

For example, topics like the TV series Firefly or threads about books that have wizards and broadswords are about the most tedious things I can imagine. So, I don’t go into those threads and tell people having a nice (even spirited!) discussion that the topic is below me.