Senator Orrin Hatch and his Republican colleagues just got shredded by the biggest newspaper in his home state of Utah.
On Thursday, the Salt Lake Tribune published an editorial just shredding Republican Senator Orrin Hatch over his “despicable” treatment of women.
“The despicable attack launched by Sen. Orrin Hatch and the Senate Judiciary Committee — more precisely, the Republicans on that committee — on one of the women who has accused Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh of sexual assault is a textbook example of why more victims do not come forward,” the paper begins.
“Worse, it betrays a positively medieval attitude toward all women as sex objects who cannot be believed or taken seriously.”
The Tribune was particularly offended by the Republicans’ attack on Julie Swetnick.
“Apparently, a former TV weatherman from Washington, D.C., provided the committee with a sworn statement revealing, allegedly, some details about Swetnick’s personal sexual preferences that are both none of anyone’s damn business and utterly irrelevant to the question of what Kavanaugh might or might not have done all those years ago.
“In a sleazy nutshell, the story is that Dennis Ketterer claims that Swetnick approached him at a Washington bar one night and struck up first a conversation and then a brief relationship in which sex was discussed but never performed.”
The Republicans released this ridiculous attack on Swetnick because Ketterer said that Swetnick never mentioned being sexually assaulted by Brett Kavanaugh in their brief interaction, as if any woman would tell a stranger her most traumatic secret.
“Clearly, the only reason for any individual to say any of this, and the only reason for the committee to make it public, is the belief that any women who would approach a self-described fat man in a bar, any women who would choose to discuss sex, is some kind of libertine who, for that reason, cannot be trusted.
“Ketterer said that his first impression of Swetnick was that she was probably a prostitute — “high end call girl” was his specific phrasing — because there was no other reason an attractive, well-dressed woman would speak to a schlub like him. Clearly, such a reading of the encounter only makes sense if women aren’t really people, but sexual objects who do or do not make themselves available in bars.”
The Tribune continues,
“And to draw from Ketterer’s account, as Hatch and whoever else was behind this horrific attack clearly want us to, that Swetnick must be lying about Kavanaugh because she never mentioned him to one short-term acquaintance is irrational and absurd. If nothing else, what all of us should have learned from not only the Kavanaugh case, but from the whole of the #MeToo movement, is that victims of sexual abuse often do not discuss their experiences with those near and dear to them, much less with casual acquaintances.
“Even if every word of Ketterer’s account is true, it has absolutely no bearing on Kavanaugh’s fitness for the high court or on the accusations leveled by Swetnick, by Christine Blasey Ford or anyone else who has or will claim they have been attacked or, in Swetnick’s case, witnessed attacks on others.”
The paper concludes telling Hatch and the Republicans that they should be ashamed of themselves for slut shaming.
“What we now know for sure is that Hatch and others working for the Judiciary Committee have, without question, tried to slime one of Kavanaugh’s accusers in a way that is widely, and accurately, described as “slut-shaming.”
“Except it is Hatch and his allies who should be thoroughly ashamed of themselves.”