The Man Behind the Brett Kavanaugh Strategy: Don McGahn

10/4/18
from The Wall Street Journal,
10/4/18:

White House counsel shepherds the judge’s Supreme Court nomination, urging him to push back hard on sexual-assault accusations.

Waiting his turn to testify last week before the Senate Judiciary Committee, Judge Brett Kavanaugh had a private word with White House counsel Don McGahn, who has been shepherding his Supreme Court nomination. Mr. McGahn cleared the holding room of staff, people familiar with the matter said. Christine Blasey Ford had just told senators that he sexually assaulted her when they were teens, and White House aides worried her account was compelling. Sitting with Judge Kavanaugh and his wife, Mr. McGahn told him he shouldn’t hold back: When facing the senators he should show his emotions and true feelings about accusations that he said are false, the people said. With a riveted nation tuned in, Judge Kavanaugh offered an impassioned and raw defense of his career and character. It isn’t clear yet whether the approach worked. Some senators say they were put off by Judge Kavanaugh’s combative tone, questioning whether he has the temperament to serve on the high court. But President Trump said he was pleased by the performance.

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