By AMI Staff Reporter
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Strangely enough, Brett Kavanaugh’s biggest defender is a “Never Trumper” named J.D. Vance.
Vance wrote “The Case For Brett Kavanaugh” in the July 3rdedition of The Wall Street Journal, perhaps the Right’s most influential opinion page. He championed Judge Kavanaugh’s candidacy for the U.S. Supreme Court’s open seat on radio, television and online.
Yet, he spent much of the 2016 election, and years since, bashing President Donald J. Trump on news outlets in North America and Western Europe.
J.D. Vance is best known for his influential book, “Hillbilly Elegy: A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis,” which purports to explain the suffering of rural, religious Trump voters to a purportedly uncomprehending coastal, college-educated elite.
Vance’s interest may be as personal as it is ideological. Vance studied under Kavanaugh, who taught a seminar at Yale Law School in 2011. Vance’s wife, Usha, clerked for Judge Kavanaugh on the D.C. Circuit, and is now clerking for U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts, court records show. This raises the possibility, raised among some conservatives online, that Kavanaugh is actually Justice Robert’s pick as much as the President Trump’s. This is disquieting to some conservatives, who are still fuming about Justice Robert’s legal maneuvering the save ObamaCare during a 2012 challenge to its constitutionality. Kavanaugh used similar moves in his lower-court ruling, which was cited by Roberts.
President Trump named Kavanaugh, currently a United States Circuit Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, as his nominee for Associate Justice for the United States Supreme Court last night at 9 PM Eastern. It was the first time in living memory that prime-time television programming was pre-empted for announcement regarding the nation’s highest court. President Trump, a former reality-TV star, held the nation in suspense until seconds before the broadcast when the wire services broke the news.
Kavanaugh, who was White House Staff Secretary in George W. Bush years and present in the executive mansion during the September 11 attacks, has been faulted by social conservatives for his closeness to the Bush family and the Republican Establishment that that political dynasty represents. The judge was a protégé of onetime Independent Counsel Kenneth Starr, who pursued President and Hillary Clinton for questionable stock-market and real-estate deals as well as lying-under-oath regarding sexual-harassment claims in the 1990s.
Vance’s hostility to President Trump is on full display on his Twitter account.
Vance also penned an insult-laded attack on President Trump in The Guardian, the British leftwing newspaper beloved by American professors. The headline sums up Vance’s views: “How Donald Trump Seduced America’s White Working Class: An acute insight into these voters almost found a new messiah in a man regarded as an offensive clown by many, a man who ultimately cannot save them.”
Vance’s article is packed with disdain for the president: “Trump instead offers a political high, a promise to ‘Make America Great Again’ without a single good idea regarding how.”
Vance has also touted his non-vote for Trump in the British press.
Vance also attacked President Trump in an ABC News.com article entitled “Author of ‘Hillbilly Elegy’ J.D. Vance: Trump ‘Doesn’t Offer Many Solutions’.”
While many “Never Trumpers” have quietly returned to the Republican fold amid tax cuts, deregulation and a rising economy, Vance has not shifted his stance. He recently told the Financial Times that he “remains critical of Trump’s dog-whistle politics related to race and immigration.”