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The Republicans began plotting their takeover of the Supreme Court thirty years ago. Brett Kavanaugh set his sights on the court right out of law school. Washington Post journalist and legal expert Ruth Marcus goes behind the scenes to document the inside story of how their supreme ambition triumphed. The Kavanaugh drama unfolded so fast in the summer of 2018 it seemed to The Republicans began plotting their takeover of the Supreme Court thirty years ago. Brett Kavanaugh set his sights on the court right out of law school. Washington Post journalist and legal expert Ruth Marcus goes behind the scenes to document the inside story of how their supreme ambition triumphed. The Kavanaugh drama unfolded so fast in the summer of 2018 it seemed to come out of nowhere. With the power of the #MeToo movement behind her, a terrified but composed Christine Blasey Ford walked into a Senate hearing room to accuse Kavanaugh of sexual assault. This unleashed unprecedented fury from a Supreme Court nominee who accused Democrats of a “calculated and orchestrated political hit.” But behind this showdown was a much bigger one. In Supreme Ambition, Washington Post journalist and legal expert Ruth Marcus goes behind the scenes to document the thirty-year mission by conservatives to win a majority on the Supreme Court and the lifelong ambition of Brett Kavanaugh to secure his place in that victory. In that sense, Marcus has delivered a master class in how Washington works and an unforgettable case study in supreme ambition. The reporting in Supreme Ambition is also full of revealing and weighty headlines, as Marcus answers the most pressing questions surrounding this historical moment: How did Kavanaugh get the nomination? Was Blasey Ford’s testimony credible? What does his confirmation mean for the future of the court? Were the Democrats outgunned from the start? On the way, she uncovers secret White House meetings, intense lobbying efforts, private confrontations on Capitol Hill, and lives forever upended on both coasts. Supreme Ambition is a page-turner that traces how Brett Kavanaugh deftly maneuvered to become the nominee; how he quashed resistance from Republicans who worried he was too squishy on conservative issues and from a president reluctant to reward a George W. Bush loyalist. It shows a Republican party that had concluded Kavanaugh was too big to fail, with senators and the FBI ignoring potentially devastating evidence against him. And it paints a picture of Democratic leaders unwilling to engage in the no-holds-barred partisan warfare that might have defeated the nominee. In the tradition of The Brethren and The Power Broker, Supreme Ambition is the definitive account of a pivotal moment in modern history, one that was thirty years in the making and that will shape the judicial system of America for generations to come.


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The Republicans began plotting their takeover of the Supreme Court thirty years ago. Brett Kavanaugh set his sights on the court right out of law school. Washington Post journalist and legal expert Ruth Marcus goes behind the scenes to document the inside story of how their supreme ambition triumphed. The Kavanaugh drama unfolded so fast in the summer of 2018 it seemed to The Republicans began plotting their takeover of the Supreme Court thirty years ago. Brett Kavanaugh set his sights on the court right out of law school. Washington Post journalist and legal expert Ruth Marcus goes behind the scenes to document the inside story of how their supreme ambition triumphed. The Kavanaugh drama unfolded so fast in the summer of 2018 it seemed to come out of nowhere. With the power of the #MeToo movement behind her, a terrified but composed Christine Blasey Ford walked into a Senate hearing room to accuse Kavanaugh of sexual assault. This unleashed unprecedented fury from a Supreme Court nominee who accused Democrats of a “calculated and orchestrated political hit.” But behind this showdown was a much bigger one. In Supreme Ambition, Washington Post journalist and legal expert Ruth Marcus goes behind the scenes to document the thirty-year mission by conservatives to win a majority on the Supreme Court and the lifelong ambition of Brett Kavanaugh to secure his place in that victory. In that sense, Marcus has delivered a master class in how Washington works and an unforgettable case study in supreme ambition. The reporting in Supreme Ambition is also full of revealing and weighty headlines, as Marcus answers the most pressing questions surrounding this historical moment: How did Kavanaugh get the nomination? Was Blasey Ford’s testimony credible? What does his confirmation mean for the future of the court? Were the Democrats outgunned from the start? On the way, she uncovers secret White House meetings, intense lobbying efforts, private confrontations on Capitol Hill, and lives forever upended on both coasts. Supreme Ambition is a page-turner that traces how Brett Kavanaugh deftly maneuvered to become the nominee; how he quashed resistance from Republicans who worried he was too squishy on conservative issues and from a president reluctant to reward a George W. Bush loyalist. It shows a Republican party that had concluded Kavanaugh was too big to fail, with senators and the FBI ignoring potentially devastating evidence against him. And it paints a picture of Democratic leaders unwilling to engage in the no-holds-barred partisan warfare that might have defeated the nominee. In the tradition of The Brethren and The Power Broker, Supreme Ambition is the definitive account of a pivotal moment in modern history, one that was thirty years in the making and that will shape the judicial system of America for generations to come.

30 review for Supreme Ambition: Brett Kavanaugh and the Conservative Takeover

  1. 5 out of 5

    Jean

    I recently read Molly Hemingways book Justice on Trial: The Kavanaugh Confirmation and the Future of the Supreme Court which provided the conservative viewpoint of the Confirmation Hearings. I was curious how Marcus would handle the Confirmation Hearings. The book is well written and meticulously researched. The book is based on the enormous amount of material including thousands of pages of Kavanaughs emails and also includes over three hundred interviews. The author points out, among other I recently read Molly Hemingway’s book “Justice on Trial: The Kavanaugh Confirmation and the Future of the Supreme Court” which provided the conservative viewpoint of the Confirmation Hearings. I was curious how Marcus would handle the Confirmation Hearings. The book is well written and meticulously researched. The book is based on the enormous amount of material including thousands of pages of Kavanaugh’s emails and also includes over three hundred interviews. The author points out, among other things, that the goal of a few powerful donors to the GOP is to pack all federal courts with conservative judges. The goal is to deregulate businesses in the area of labor laws, consumer protection laws, banking regulations as well as environmental laws. She points out the key big donors are using the social issues such as abortion as a cover for their main goal of deregulation of industry. The author provides information showing that Gorsuch and Kavanaugh are ruling in favor of reducing regulations on businesses. Marcus discusses the rivalries and enmities involved in the Confirmation Hearings. She also covers what Marcus calls the “Feinstein mismanagement of Christine Blasey Ford’s case”. Marcus also takes the democrats to task. The book appears primarily unbiased, but Marcus does come across as unsympathetic to the GOP’s endeavor to pack the Court. Marcus takes both parties to task for extreme partisanship rather than the welfare of the country. I recommend this book. Marcus is a graduate of Yale University and Harvard Law School. She is a veteran journalist with the Washington Post. She was a finalist for the 2007 Pulitzer Prize in Commentary. I read this as an audiobook downloaded from Audible. The book is sixteen hours and one minute. Alma Cuervo does a good job narrating the book. Cuervo is an actress and well-known audiobook narrator.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Jill Meyer

    There were many issues in the 2016 Presidential election, but perhaps the most important was over control of the United States Supreme Court. Both sides had reason to count on the results of the election to determine who would be nominated to the high court after the death of Antonin Scalia a few months previous. President Obama had nominated liberal Merrick Garland to the seat but his nomination was held up in the Republican-controlled Senate. Kentucky senator Mitch McConnell, was able to There were many issues in the 2016 Presidential election, but perhaps the most important was over control of the United States Supreme Court. Both sides had reason to count on the results of the election to determine who would be nominated to the high court after the death of Antonin Scalia a few months previous. President Obama had nominated liberal Merrick Garland to the seat but his nomination was held up in the Republican-controlled Senate. Kentucky senator Mitch McConnell, was able to postpone the vote til after the November election. “It’s the Supreme Court”, said both Democrats and Republicans in talking about the crucial issues in the coming election. At stake were both Scalia’s seat AND any upcoming open seats. The election was won by Trump and the Republicans. In fact, not only did they control the White House, they retained both houses of Congress. Neal Gorsuch, a strong, steady Conservative voice was confirmed to replace Scalia. A conservative replaced a conservative, well, that wasn’t as bad as it could have been; it was the next replacement choice that was the killer, as far as liberals and Democrats were concerned. It was the selection and confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh, a US circuit judge on the US court of Appeals, that dominated the news in the summer and fall of 2016. It is the subject of Washington Post’s Ruth Marcus’ excellent book, “Supreme Ambition: Brett Kavanaugh and the Conservative Takeover”. Brett Kavanaugh had been working towards a seat on the Supreme Court most of his life. He attended the right universities and clerked for Justice Anthony Kennedy, whose seat he too after Kennedy resigned in the summer of 2016. But Kavanaugh had another thing going for him. He had been included on the Federalist Society’s all-important list of “preapproved” potential Supreme Court justices. The people on the list thought the “right” way for the president who had promised to only appoint Conservative judges. Marcus’s book goes into the stories behind the stories; the facts behind the facts. Kavanaugh was accused of sexual misconduct and several very brave women testified in public about his actions as a teenager. Has there ever been a teenager who liked beer more than Brett Kavanaugh? Between the talk about beer and the calendars Kavanaugh produced to show he was too busy drinking to assault anyone, the Senate hearings were an odd mixture of grotesqueness and shame that our own government had descended into “Brett Kavanaugh country”. Ruth Marcus has written a compulsively readable book about the whole sorry Kavanaugh-mess. You don’t need to be a lawyer to read and enjoy her book.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Paul

    This is the definitive book to read on the Kavanaugh hearing for the Supreme Court. It is highly critical, highly unbiased and comes down with a reasonable explanation of what happened during the hearing, what Republicans got by with in shutting down witnesses that supported Christine Blasey Ford's testimony, and what the future will likely be based on what transpired. My takeaways: Ford was clearly telling the truth. Kavanaugh was so drunk in his high school and college days that he was likely This is the definitive book to read on the Kavanaugh hearing for the Supreme Court. It is highly critical, highly unbiased and comes down with a reasonable explanation of what happened during the hearing, what Republicans got by with in shutting down witnesses that supported Christine Blasey Ford's testimony, and what the future will likely be based on what transpired. My takeaways: Ford was clearly telling the truth. Kavanaugh was so drunk in his high school and college days that he was likely blacked out during critical events like his attempted rape of Ford, and his penis-thrusting into the face of Debbie Ramirez. If all the witnesses had truly been allowed to testify, Kavanaugh would never have gotten approval to join the Supreme Court. That said, the author says that Kavanaugh is extremely likable and a people pleaser. While he's a conservative, he will not likely be as unbending as Clarence Thomas and Neil Gorsuch. He has said in the past that Roe v. Wade is "settled law," and he is therefore on the hook to maintain that viewpoint now that he's a member of SCOTUS. Before his nomination, the Republicans considered him "squishy" on some issues, and this may be an indicator of some slight liberal sympathies that will make him less of a hard-right justice. So far, he has ruled very carefully, and is something of a wild card on decisions that will be critical to liberals and conservatives in the near future. Marcus said she thought he should have been on the original shortlist for SCOTUS. He will likely not be impeached and have to have his entire SCOTUS hearing adjudicated a second time. His leading effect on the Supreme Court is as "an indelible blot" on the institution, in the words of Christine Blasey Ford. The future remains to be seen.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Jeff Berman

    The current President calls Ruth Marcus book about the Kavanaugh debacle and the right wing crusade to takeover SCOTUS a badly written & researched disaster.... So of course its brilliantly written & researched. Highly recommend. The current President calls Ruth Marcus’ book about the Kavanaugh debacle and the right wing crusade to takeover SCOTUS “a badly written & researched disaster....” So of course it’s brilliantly written & researched. Highly recommend.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Steve

    After reading the disappointing, partisan book, Justice on Trial, I was looking for an even-handed account of the Kavanaugh story. This book turned out to be exactly that. I strongly recommend it for anyone looking for a balanced approach to the events surrounding the Kavanaugh confirmation. Marcus has done a great job of exploring the characters and events in a way that gives the reader great insights. Before starting these two books, other reading had persuaded me that it was at least possible After reading the disappointing, partisan book, Justice on Trial, I was looking for an even-handed account of the Kavanaugh story. This book turned out to be exactly that. I strongly recommend it for anyone looking for a balanced approach to the events surrounding the Kavanaugh confirmation. Marcus has done a great job of exploring the characters and events in a way that gives the reader great insights. Before starting these two books, other reading had persuaded me that it was at least possible that the claims against Kavanaugh were the result of imperfect memories impacted by drinking and the passage of time. After reading these two books, particularly the Marcus book, I am convinced that something definitely happened between Ford and Kavanaugh and that the latter likely did expose himself to female classmates at Yale. It says a lot about the quality of Marcus’ book that she has changed my thinking on this subject.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Kristi Richardson

    Excellent book on the nomination and subsequent rise of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court. Ruth Marcus gives us new insights on how Mr. Kavanaugh got the nomination and Christine Blasey Ford's decision to testify against him. This is a factual story and I came away with some interesting insights. Brett Kavanaugh was known as a "Bush" lawyer, and Justice Kennedy recommended him to Trump. Trump desperately wanted to appoint two Supreme Court Justices in his first term. The inference is that Excellent book on the nomination and subsequent rise of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court. Ruth Marcus gives us new insights on how Mr. Kavanaugh got the nomination and Christine Blasey Ford's decision to testify against him. This is a factual story and I came away with some interesting insights. Brett Kavanaugh was known as a "Bush" lawyer, and Justice Kennedy recommended him to Trump. Trump desperately wanted to appoint two Supreme Court Justices in his first term. The inference is that Trump made a deal with Kennedy to resign if he nominated Kavanaugh. This is a well written book by a noted journalist who follows the justice system. I checked it out at our local library.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Tom

    Infuriating! I have utterly no confidence in the U.S. Supreme Court as an independent arbiter of justice. It is utterly captive to far-right politics and money, and this analysis of the Kavanaugh hearings re-victimizes anyone who lived through the experience.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Mary Miller

    Well researched and written, I learned quite a bit about behind the scenes of Washington politics. Kavanaugh was not even on the list for Supreme Court Justice until he asked Justice Kennedy to intercede for him with Trump. Kennedy had a private meeting with Trump and he was added to the list. Also learned he worked on Bush's staff and married his secretary. Lots of visits to Texas and clearing brush with the president. Two supreme court justices, Thomas and Kavanaugh, both accused of sexual Well researched and written, I learned quite a bit about behind the scenes of Washington politics. Kavanaugh was not even on the list for Supreme Court Justice until he asked Justice Kennedy to intercede for him with Trump. Kennedy had a private meeting with Trump and he was added to the list. Also learned he worked on Bush's staff and married his secretary. Lots of visits to Texas and clearing brush with the president. Two supreme court justices, Thomas and Kavanaugh, both accused of sexual offenses owe their seats to the influence of the Bush family. Also remember both Bush and Kavanaugh went to Yale and were both heavy drinkers and party boys. The more I learn about conservative politics and the lack of smarts on the part of the liberals the more I despair.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Judy

    Since I already knew how depressing the ending was, I don't know why I tortured myself reading how Brett Kavanaugh, beer drinking virgin, worked so hard to join his lying and lecherous buddy Clarence Thomas on the Supreme Court, but I guess it's because I admire Ruth Marcus so much. Her recounting of the machinations of those who were working for "the deconstruction of the administrative state" (p 63) takes us as close to the Hamilton musical's "Room Where It Happened" as we're likely to get. Since I already knew how depressing the ending was, I don't know why I tortured myself reading how Brett Kavanaugh, beer drinking virgin, worked so hard to join his lying and lecherous buddy Clarence Thomas on the Supreme Court, but I guess it's because I admire Ruth Marcus so much. Her recounting of the machinations of those who were working for "the deconstruction of the administrative state" (p 63) takes us as close to the Hamilton musical's "Room Where It Happened" as we're likely to get. While many of us concentrated on Kavanaugh's record of pro-assault rifle and anti Roe v Wade, the Federalists never waivered from the title's subhead: "the Conservative Takeover" of the Court, everything else, be damned. It began at least in 1976 with Antonin Scalia's appointment. Kavenaugh was polishing his right-leaning resume all along, but working with Ken Starr's investigation of the Clintons clinched it: "If the embers of political partisanship had been smoldering in Kavanaugh, the Starr investigation was the bellows that seemed to make those instincts catch fire." (p 120). The cast of Kavanaugh backers were tireless as they worked to exercise "our most precious of presential powers" - the power to shape the court. Kavanaugh wasn't on the list Don McGahn originally drew up as a campaign tool for Trump, but he wormed his way on it. All my worse nightmares are here: Ken Starr, Clarence Thomas, Jeff Sessions, Robert Bork, to name a few. Christine Blasey Ford heads the casualty list, but there were others, too: Claire McCaskill, Heidi Heidcamp, and the whole jurisprudence system that crashed when the FBI failed to do due diligence. If anyone talked to Max Stier (p 334) would the outcome have been the same? He, after all, is male! Would Jeff Flake have paid more attention if he hadn't been conconcerned about threats on his life? (p 337) Yep, it's a depressing story, but Marcus has some goodies to cherry-pick, like this one from Chuck Shumer in 2004: "Kavanaugh's nomination to the DC circuit is not just a drop of salt in the partisan wounds, it is the whole shaker." (p 154) And the fact that when Blasey Ford came to Washington, she stayed in the Watergate on the same floor as Liddy and Hunt used for their offices. (p 292) Or the fun fact that Jeff Flake is from Snowflake, AZ.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Sherry Wilmes

    I am very pleased to have read this book and thank Ruth for her work to write this. Few public servants or public figures come out of this in high esteem. There are in addition to further lost respect for Kavanaugh, the usuals of the last few years, including Lindsey Graham, Don McGahn, Chuck Grassley, dozens of unnamed staffers, etc., but the Democrats dont deserve our respect much either. And given what McGahn did to limit the FBI investigation in the late stages of this process of approval, I am very pleased to have read this book and thank Ruth for her work to write this. Few public servants or public figures come out of this in high esteem. There are in addition to further lost respect for Kavanaugh, the usuals of the last few years, including Lindsey Graham, Don McGahn, Chuck Grassley, dozens of unnamed staffers, etc., but the Democrats don’t deserve our respect much either. And given what McGahn did to limit the FBI investigation in the late stages of this process of approval, there is much legislative war to pursue to limit the executive powers of the presidency. Thanks for Senator Coons’ work to bring truth to light. This is well researched and written. It moved along through familiar material quickly and clearly. I also appreciated Ruth’s remarks and insight at the book’s end. This is really insightful material.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Stephen Morrissey

    The nomination and confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh is likely to go down in history, in Chuck Schumer's words, as one of the most sordid episodes in modern political history. Ruth Marcus's "Supreme Ambition" excellently uncovers the facts, as best we know them now, behind Kavanaugh, Blasey Ford, and the politicking in-between it all. One take-away from the book is clear: there are few, if any, profiles in courage here. The Republicans come off as obsessively-focused on getting another The nomination and confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh is likely to go down in history, in Chuck Schumer's words, as one of the most sordid episodes in modern political history. Ruth Marcus's "Supreme Ambition" excellently uncovers the facts, as best we know them now, behind Kavanaugh, Blasey Ford, and the politicking in-between it all. One take-away from the book is clear: there are few, if any, profiles in courage here. The Republicans come off as obsessively-focused on getting another conservative seat on the Supreme Court, with no regard for the costs or the allegations. Democrats come off as bumbling at best, with an indecisive strategy at first, and later Senator Dianne Feinstein's less-than-admirable handling of Blasey Ford's first admission of the sexual assault incident. Kavanaugh, even if he is to be admired for sticking up for his side of the story, emerges as the emblem of our era: a hyper-partisan justice in a hyper-partisan time. Marcus's reporting is thorough, even-handed, and is best at teasing out the facts that did not emerge in real-time, such as a corroborating witness for the Deborah Ramirez allegation who volunteered himself not only to the FBI, but to Senators Coons and Collins. In the end, though, the story, like so many others, was not checked by the FBI nor Senate Republicans. The GOP has achieved a long-cherished goal with Kavanaugh on the bench: a full-throated conservative majority. Repercussions unknown to us will surely spring from a group of justices wary of abortion, primed to de-construct the administrative state, and cheerful at the prospect of more money invading our politics. That may not be the most important data point on the Court, though. Two of our nine justices now sit on that highest of courts, amidst allegations of sexual assault. the institution may be conservative in its politics, but it is tragic in its make-up. That may be the legacy of Roberts Court, and Brett Kavanaugh.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Michael

    It's hard to see how the Brett Kavanaugh affair, a month-long exercise in nihilism and despair, will get a more even-handed summary than the one Ruth Marcus offers here. Going over the specifics is futile at this point; everyone's too dug in. I'll just add that my feeling on Kavanaugh never wavered: I thought he was a empty suit from the get-go, a lifetime party hack, the assault allegation being merely the cherry on a general shit sundae. I suspect that many Republicans felt the same way, going It's hard to see how the Brett Kavanaugh affair, a month-long exercise in nihilism and despair, will get a more even-handed summary than the one Ruth Marcus offers here. Going over the specifics is futile at this point; everyone's too dug in. I'll just add that my feeling on Kavanaugh never wavered: I thought he was a empty suit from the get-go, a lifetime party hack, the assault allegation being merely the cherry on a general shit sundae. I suspect that many Republicans felt the same way, going through the motions of support before the politics of the situation took over and confirming Kavanaugh became an existential necessity. Look, I'm not naive; the Democrats were out-numbered and out-gunned. Trump and McConnell could have nominated a fruit fly and if there was an R next to its name, it would have been confirmed. So why didn't they pick someone else off their extensive list? Someone who would have voted exactly the same way as Kavanaugh but without the baggage and would have sailed through confirmation hearings, like Gorsuch? As far as the chief allegation put against him, my own conclusions correspond with Marcus' conclusions: Kavanaugh truthfully doesn't remember assaulting Christine Ford because he was blackout-drunk, and he was blackout-drunk because he doesn't know how to handle his alcohol, and guys like that are a dime-a-dozen, and I saw them all over high school and college, and they look and sound exactly like Kavanaugh did at the Senate hearing. Anyway, I don't intend to read more Kavanaugh books due to self-preservation, but I feel confident in asserting that this will be the definitive account. Well-reported and about as balanced as you can get in 2020. (I'd still like to know how Kavanaugh, who is not independently wealthy, paid off six figures of credit card debt on two separate occasions.)

  13. 5 out of 5

    Grace

    The author shows the development of the conservative takeover of the Supreme Court in response to the failed nomination of Robert Bork. What became clear to me is that the Republicans used tactics to get Anthony Kennedy to retire during the middle of Trump's first term so that the judge could received ego-enhancing accolades while still alive. Meanwhile, Ruth Bader Ginsburg rebuffed Democratic suggestions that she retire while Obama was in the middle of his presidency in order to keep a liberal The author shows the development of the conservative takeover of the Supreme Court in response to the failed nomination of Robert Bork. What became clear to me is that the Republicans used tactics to get Anthony Kennedy to retire during the middle of Trump's first term so that the judge could received ego-enhancing accolades while still alive. Meanwhile, Ruth Bader Ginsburg rebuffed Democratic suggestions that she retire while Obama was in the middle of his presidency in order to keep a liberal seat on the court and now she holds on through sheer willpower and her ability to continuously slam the door on the grim reaper. Republicans play hardball while Democrats let things play themselves out.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Susan

    I have watched Ruth Marcus commenting on many political cable news show. She always has interesting perspectives. So, when I heard she was publishing a book, I was excited. But, then I learned it was about the Brett Kavanaugh controversy. I really didn't want to re-hash it in my head. I was reading it during the impeachment trials. We all know how both went down, badly for our country( at least in my eyes). But now that it has been a year since Brett Kavanaugh was confirmed. I look at it in a I have watched Ruth Marcus commenting on many political cable news show. She always has interesting perspectives. So, when I heard she was publishing a book, I was excited. But, then I learned it was about the Brett Kavanaugh controversy. I really didn't want to re-hash it in my head. I was reading it during the impeachment trials. We all know how both went down, badly for our country( at least in my eyes). But now that it has been a year since Brett Kavanaugh was confirmed. I look at it in a different light. Ruth Marcus brings to light what the republicans were up to for the past 30 years. Why it is important to select more conservative judges to the judicial system. How dark money, and lobbyists, Super-Pacs, and the Federalist's Society has deeply affected the political system. I found interesting was the behind the scenes shenanigans of both sides. At the heat of the moment, I was caught up in the #MeToo movement. My view has changed since a year ago. How can you judge a man's behavior in high school or college? Now, that he is a middle-aged man, people do change. If this was brought up during his time as a judge, like the Anita Hill, and Thomas controversy. That is totally different. There doesn't seem to be anyone that has come forward about sexual behavior while he was a judge. In fact he has staff that are filled by women. This was a difficult read as I was reading it during the impeachment trial. I finished right at the same time at the State of the Union address. He did the same thing, at the end of the Kavanaugh confirmation hearing, and the impeachment trial. Poor me, I am a victim. He's poll numbers just improved. He knows how to play the game.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Robert P. Hoffman

    This is an outstanding book that objectively discusses the successful attempts by conservatives to get conservative justices on the Supreme Court. It is clear that the author and her researchers have talked to everyone involved in the nomination fight. The author waits until the end to give her views, throughout the book she is judicious in drawing conclusions. The person who comes across as being borderline incompetent is Diane Feinstein. She mishandled the information provided by Ford and then This is an outstanding book that objectively discusses the successful attempts by conservatives to get conservative justices on the Supreme Court. It is clear that the author and her researchers have talked to everyone involved in the nomination fight. The author waits until the end to give her views, throughout the book she is judicious in drawing conclusions. The person who comes across as being borderline incompetent is Diane Feinstein. She mishandled the information provided by Ford and then when additional witnesses came forward she mishandled that. It is disheartening that she is still a Senator.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Betsy

    This is a detailed account of the confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh, told by Washington Post journalist Ruth Marcus, who is also trained as a lawyer. I found it fascinating! I had watched the events carefully when they occurred, but had forgotten the botched/half-hearted/pseudo FBI investigation. From Marcus' account, one can infer that the "investigation" was the product of someone's orders. Marcus knew Kavanaugh while he was in the Bush White House, and enjoyed working with him. But she is a This is a detailed account of the confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh, told by Washington Post journalist Ruth Marcus, who is also trained as a lawyer. I found it fascinating! I had watched the events carefully when they occurred, but had forgotten the botched/half-hearted/pseudo FBI investigation. From Marcus' account, one can infer that the "investigation" was the product of someone's orders. Marcus knew Kavanaugh while he was in the Bush White House, and enjoyed working with him. But she is a Democrat - and a woman. All of the above invigorated her perspective of this confirmation process. Definitely wortj reading!

  17. 4 out of 5

    Judi Fine

    Ruth Marcus does an excellent job of taking us through the backstory of the Kavanaugh nomination and then expertly gives us insight into the vote and implications for the future. Marcus is a reporter and looks at the story through a fairly objective lens. I gained a lot from reading this book. Things are not all black and white. And the conservatives have done a remarkable job setting things in place for the nominations of the last four conservative Supreme Court justices. This is a cautionary Ruth Marcus does an excellent job of taking us through the backstory of the Kavanaugh nomination and then expertly gives us insight into the vote and implications for the future. Marcus is a reporter and looks at the story through a fairly objective lens. I gained a lot from reading this book. Things are not all black and white. And the conservatives have done a remarkable job setting things in place for the nominations of the last four conservative Supreme Court justices. This is a cautionary tale that I would highly recommend.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Lynn

    Everything you ever wanted to know about the Kavanaugh Supreme Court Nomination process. Much in this book I watched on television and will be forever seared into my brain. The author also provides much behind the scenes information starting with Kavanaughs decades long quest to be on the highest court in the land. I found much of this background information very disturbing. As someone in the book says (in reference to Clarence Yhomas's nomination), why give a nominee the benefit of the doubt, Everything you ever wanted to know about the Kavanaugh Supreme Court Nomination process. Much in this book I watched on television and will be forever seared into my brain. The author also provides much behind the scenes information starting with Kavanaughs decades long quest to be on the highest court in the land. I found much of this background information very disturbing. As someone in the book says (in reference to Clarence Yhomas's nomination), why give a nominee the benefit of the doubt, shouldn't it go to the court and the country?

  19. 4 out of 5

    Charles Fried

    This is an excellent, and I think, fair treatment of the events that unfolded in the Kavanaugh confirmation to the Supreme Court. The circumstances were unfortunate for nearly everyone, both players in the drama, and the rest of the country. The author provides a very readable yet dispassionate account of the background, the individuals, the issues, and the institutions involved, and how things went so wrong.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Robin Case

    First half of the book is pretty good, raising excellent points on Kavanaugh's education and background. The second half is truly awful, a complete lack of balance and perspective on that whole Senate circus, very limited new information.

  21. 5 out of 5

    jennifer

    We still need an investigation of his dicey finances. Her thesis falls off some when we get to his confirmation - it was a book about an ambitious dude of average intelligence; it turns into a story about Senators.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Katherine

    4.5; an excellent analysis and behind-the-scenes look at the nomination process.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Dan Cotter

    This is an excellent book about Kavanaugh and about the the Republicans and their strategy on filling vacancies.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Bonnie

    Phenomenally well written and reported. A must read.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Mary Hogge

    Horrible! Don't waste your time with this misogynistic garbage!

  26. 4 out of 5

    Jim Miller

    An interesting look into what goes into making and choosing a a supreme court justice

  27. 4 out of 5

    Tamera

    A fantastic, depressing, incredibly well researched and written, and beyond informative book.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Terry Earley

    Ordered ebook on overdrive 1-18-2020

  29. 5 out of 5

    Kevin

    Great review of the time period going over all the things that occurred.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Michael Williams

    A thorough, balanced, and often riveting account of Brett Kavanaughs rise and almost fall. A thorough, balanced, and often riveting account of Brett Kavanaugh’s rise and almost fall.

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