NEW YORK — In a clear attempt to deploy the time-tested progressive tactic of divisive warfare, the activist organization at the center of opposing President Trump’s Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh complains on its website that “Trump’s judges are overwhelmingly white men.”
Demand Justice, founded by former members of Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign, is tied to the who’s who of the organized progressive left.
Within less than one hour of Trump’s Supreme Court announcement on Monday, Demand Justice already launched its sister website stopkavanaugh.com, exclaiming, “We need to demand that the Senate defeat the Brett Kavanaugh nomination.” The site does not contain many details about Kavanaugh.
Its own website, Demand Justice, is also short on content about Trump-appointed judges other than to claim generally:
Trump’s judges are overwhelmingly white men. Many are not at all qualified for their posts. And they consistently hold extreme, right-wing views.
His nominees have a record of favoring big corporations over workers. They have fought to restrict women’s access to reproductive health services and deny equal treatment to LGBTQ Americans.
Trump’s judges also have a clear record of bigoted views when it comes to race.
If we truly want to stop Trump, we can’t surrender this fight.
Demand Justice was founded by Brian Fallon, who served as press secretary for Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign. The group’s digital team is headed by Gabrielle McCaffrey, who was a digital organizer for Clinton’s campaign.
Working at Demand Justice is Paige Herwig, a former Judiciary Committee aide to Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA). Prior to her stint with Feinstein, Herwig served as counselor to Attorney General Loretta Lynch.
According to emails released by the Justice Department, Herwig was included in a chain of emails crafting the initial media response into Lynch’s infamous tarmac meeting at the Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport in which former President Bill Clinton, the husband of the FBI’s main subject in a criminal probe, boarded the attorney general’s plane and reportedly stayed there for about 20 minutes.
Demand Justice’s formation was encouraged by former Obama White House counselor John Podesta, who served as chairman of Clinton’s latest presidential campaign. “We have ignored this field of battle for too long,” Podesta told the New York Times regarding Demand Justice.
In a recent interview with the New York Times, Fallon would not comment on the source of the group’s financing, but the newspaper noted that he was a featured speaker recently at the conference of the Democracy Alliance, a grouping of progressive donors.
Democracy Alliance directs donors to leftist groups, including the ACLU, the Women’s March, Media Matters for America, and reportedly the radical Indivisible group known for storming Republican townhalls. Democracy Alliance highlighted anti-Trump organizations to donors in a “resistance map” suggesting which activist groups would be opportune for funding. Already, Indivisible received funds from donors and coalitions associated with Democracy Alliance financiers, the New York Times reported.
In a clear sign of desperation, Fallon took to CNN earlier this week, where he gave Chris Cuomo a preview of his organization’s likely attacks on Kavanaugh, including generating questions without any evidence about whether Kavanaugh knew about sexual harassment allegations related to former Ninth Circuit Judge Alex Kozinski for which Kavanaugh clerked in 1991.
Kozinski announced his retirement in December 2017 after numerous women claimed in Washington Post interviews that they were subjected to inappropriate sexual behavior. Kavanaugh was one of many lawyers who clerked for Kozinski, and Fallon presented no evidence that Kavanaugh would have known about any of those charges. Indeed, Cuomo took issue with Fallon’s strategy, and the activist made clear he had no actual evidence but still planned to raise questions.
In the interview, Fallon stated:
Two other issues that could be wild cards in this confirmation, number one, his work – there is a lot of papers related to his work on the Starr committee that have not been out yet. There is going to be a big effort to try to get the National Archives to release all those documents. They are going to have to go through them, peruse them, see what has to be redacted and then his e-mails from the time in the Bush White House.
When it was Elena Kagan that was put forward, I think there was 170,000 some pages that required 6,000 man hours to go through all of that. So, Mitch McConnell himself indicated in a leaked story that came out in the “New York Times” that he was privately urging the Trump White House to look away from Brett Kavanaugh because he worried that the document production alone with would delay a hearing and potentially throw the schedule off.
Cuomo interjected, pointing out, “But Grassley is in charge of what they are allowed to do and how long they can take.”
He then pointed to Kavanaugh’s clerkship with Kozinsky:
One other thing that I think is going to be relevant, one of Brett Kavanaugh’s mentors in life and in his career as a judge is a guy by the name of Alex Kozinski who is a judge on the Ninth Circuit who had to resign in disgrace last year because of the #MeToo Movement.
He was accused publicly on the record by a number of female clerks for having behaved inappropriately in chambers, and he had to resign in disgrace. Brett Kavanaugh is somebody that is friends and was a mentor and personally clerked for Alex Kozinski. I think there’s going to be a lot of senators in this hearing that want to know what he knew and when he knew it about Alex Kozinski’s behavior.
Cuomo, however, took issue with some of this strategy. “What he knew if it were happening when he was there, fair line of questioning. Him being responsible for somebody else’s actions, not fair,” the host said.
Fallon replied, again clearly relying on speculation:
Not only was he a clerk for Alex Kozinski, I think in 1990, but Brett Kavanaugh was who was considered in the judicial world as a feeder judge for Anthony Kennedy, who he clerked for in the Supreme Court, as is Kozinski. And oftentimes, Kavanaugh would interview prospective clerks that Anthony Kennedy might have clerked for him on the Supreme Court. And Kozinski would send a lot of clerks to Brett Kavanaugh to interview for clerkships with Anthony Kennedy.
So, the likelihood that Brett Kavanaugh knew what was an open secret in the Ninth Circuit about Alex Kozinski’s misbehavior is very high. I think he’s going to have to answer questions about that.
“I agree there are legitimate questions, but we cannot impugn Kavanaugh with what Kozinski did unless we have knowledge of fact of what he knew at the time,” interjected Cuomo.
Fallon relented, essentially conceding that he has no evidence, stating, “We will only know that if we ask the questions.”
Cuomo told the activist that “You’ve got to give him the benefit of the doubt until he answers them.”
Fallon replied, “But Grassley has been as aggressive as anybody in forcing past nominees to produce everything. So, he would be a hypocrite now if he didn’t insist on the same standard for Kavanaugh.”
Aaron Klein is Breitbart’s Jerusalem bureau chief and senior investigative reporter. He is a New York Times bestselling author and hosts the popular weekend talk radio program, “Aaron Klein Investigative Radio.” Follow him on Twitter @AaronKleinShow. Follow him on Facebook.
Joshua Klein contributed research to this article.