Dozens of protesters lined Camelback Road outside Sen. Jeff Flake’s office today to rally against Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation to the U.S. Supreme Court.
The protest began not long after Flake called for the vote on Kavanaugh’s confirmation to be delayed so the FBI can investigate Dr. Christine Blasey Ford’s allegations that Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her while they were in high school. Flake’s call came just hours after he voted for Kavanaugh’s confirmation in the Senate Judiciary Committee.
Almira Poudrier, a Mesa resident, said she rarely protests, but that it was worth standing in the 105-degree heat and getting sunburned to protest against Kavanaugh.
“I just think this is a moment in time when we have to take a stand on this. We can’t go backwards from here,” Poudrier said. “I remember watching Anita Hill and thinking that it was horrible then. And I feel like this is even worse, and we’re going backwards from where were then, as a society and as a country and as a democracy.”
Many protesters were skeptical that Flake will vote against Kavanaugh’s confirmation next week, and several cited his habit of speaking out against President Donald Trump before voting for his agenda. But many, including Poudrier, were still pleased with Flake’s call for a delay and an investigation.
“I think he’s under a lot of pressure from his Republican counterparts and he feels the need to … vote in a way that will make the rest of the Republicans happy. But I’ve always thought he had a spine and he had courage and he had a sense of honor,” she said. “He’s struggling with this. We can see him going back and forth on it. We just hope he comes down on the right side.”
Katherine Duran, a retired schoolteacher from Phoenix, joked that she’s called Flake’s office so many times that she has the number on speed-dial.
“I was hoping that he would do something. So, for him to come in at the eleventh hour, that’s OK. At least that buys us more time to get an investigation, a real investigation,” Duran said.