Roy Exum: I Believe Bredesen

Monday, October 8, 2018 - by Roy Exum
Roy Exum
Roy Exum

When Phil Bredesen, the former Tennessee governor who is now running for Senate, announced last week that if he was already a Senator he would have supported Brett Kavanaugh, it was predictable he would be immediately assaulted by the wackos who “make the noise” for both political parties. But his candor was equally, if not more, refreshing because I believe he was honest, that he simply told the truth based on his convictions. What’s troubling is the truth doesn’t seem to matter anymore.

In the last few weeks Justice Kavanaugh has been subjected to a brutal public beating as he stood by his sworn vow that he had never sexually molested anyone. I believe the jurist, whole-heartedly, for the biggest reason of all: there is no compelling reason for me not to take him on his word. And Bredesen, facing blackmail from the vermin in his own party, ignored their sleaze in the same way Maine Senator Susan Collins faced down the same rogues by standing on her personal principles for the telling vote.

Honestly, I am somewhat humored by the parallels between Bredesen and Kavanaugh in a political catastrophe where telling the truth has taken a backseat to chicanery. It is clear that if an elected official – one chosen by the people to be honest and pure and never bending in their personal belief between right and wrong – does not yield to party lines instead of what they believe to be the truth, they are villainized and shamed in a very real American tragedy.

The truth is absolute – there is no substitute nor option. Think about this: In Kavanaugh’s case the issue was the truth. It was his word against that of an accuser. While a difference of opinion has forged our nation, human logic forces me to totally reject the finding that, in this given case, only Republicans could believe a man and only Democrats did not. It is ludicrous that 100 quite different people from 50 states now make serious decisions based on party instead of their own intellect, their morals, their religious backgrounds and their personal beliefs.

Neither the FBI, the nation’s strongest safe-keepers of justice who we still must believe in, or the Democratic Party, now torn apart by an unfathomable and vicious group of miscreants that just stooped to the lowest level of decency, could scuttle Kavanaugh’s deserved nomination. He was sworn in late Saturday after an easy 50-48 vote that – let’s face it -- had virtually no trace of the truth.

Bredesen, in an earnest effort to replace the departing Bob Corker in the Nov. 6 election, explained his reason for backing the Supreme Court nominee: "I think you have to look at somebody’s entire record. That was an aberration. He has a good reputation for the way he (conducted) himself as a judge over the last 12 years or so."

It was an honest answer but because a mob-like media tried to use Bredesen like the party thugs manipulated Kavanaugh’s accuser, college professor Christine Ford, Bredesen was immediately tagged as an opportunistic liar by both sides. In a deep red state like Tennessee, it is believed that no Democrat can win at any political level so when Bredesen backed Kavanaugh, the party loyalists were left fuming.

Mary Mancini, the state Democratic chairman, said it was a “disappointing statement based on imperfect and limited information as a result of a flawed and secretive process,” but quickly added Bredesen would still be “far superior” to the Republican candidate, Marsha Blackburn. The polls have the two neck-and-neck going into the final month of campaigning and Blackburn seems desperate.

She knows Bredesen has some appeal to independent Republicans and, when he was the state’s governor for two terms (2003-2011), the fact Bredesen was financially conservative appealed to many across the state. Blackburn was fast to attack Bredesen’s support of Kavanaugh: “His campaign is bought and paid for by (Senate Minority Leader) Chuck Schumer and national Democrats, including (former New York Mayor) Michael Bloomberg,” Blackburn said in a rushed statement on Friday, the day before Kavanaugh was elected by the Senate.

Bredesen, who has publicly said he will not support Minority leader Schumer, was discredited by two national groups of left-leaning liberals minutes after he announced he believed Kavanaugh. MoveOn immediate sent all of its followers a terse Tweet: “We're cancelling a planned six-figure digital video ad expenditure for Phil Bredesen in Tennessee due to his Kavanaugh position. And similarly, will be pulling all planned campaigning on behalf of Joe Manchin in West Virginia if he votes yes. Kavanaugh is unfit for the Court.”

Priorities USA Action, another political action group, told the Daily Beast it had not been spending in Tennessee, but issued via a statement --“that option is now off the table.”

In a perfect world, our Department of Justice would move swiftly to press charges of blackmail, bribery, conspiracy, tampering, and every other possible charge against MoveOn and Priorities USA Action. The view from here is the people responsible for retaliation are guilty as sin. I’d also move on every individual that was part of the pressure on Susan Collins because the Senator from Maine was clearly threatened in an unprecedented attack.

And, in a perfect world, I would hope these would have to stand before the Supreme Court, where Justice Kavanaugh himself might have a question or two.

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