Yesterday, the public show trial against Judge Kavanaugh went into recess. One week from now, the jury—the Senators from each State—will reach a verdict. As explained in this site's most recent podcast, there is no presumption of innocence in the case against Kavanaugh. The Court of Public Opinion operates on simple majority rule. The only recourse for a minority party is to pressure sympathetic voices in the majority to cave to minority "demands." The Democratic minority found a soft target in Senator Jeff Flake.
Approximately one year ago, Flake publicly detached himself from the Republican Party. Flake explained that he would not seek re-election because he would not be complicit in making the Trump era a "new normal." Unlike "Never-Trump" neoconservatives, Jeff Flake represents no ideology being left in the dustbin of history. The "normal" which Jeff claims to represent is a figment—an imaginary bygone utopia of bipartisan respect and civility.
An uncivil Democrat minority successfully cowed Flake. The loud complaints from Democrat politicians and the looming-but-unsubstantiated claims of sexual misconduct were reminiscent of the 2016 election. Flake criticized Republican voters for their decision to put Trump in the nation's highest office while there were misconduct allegations against him. Now Flake will likely put Kavanaugh in one of the nation's highest offices while there are similar allegations against him. This apparent flip-flop is not lost on Flake. He desperately needed to do something that could distinguish him the Republican voters he already criticized—and the Democrats' call for delay provided him exactly what he needed.
Conservative pundits are criticizing Flake for his flake-y-ness. But this should have been expected. Going after Flake simply wastes energy. Instead, Republicans should focus their attention on the two lawyers responsible for the latest and least credible allegations against Judge Kavanaugh, both of which conveniently arose during the Ford hearing.
There is zero chance that the one-week FBI "investigation" (or "background check") will satisfy Democrats. They will find some reason to demand that the investigation be given more time. However, Republicans can change that. In fact, Republicans have an opportunity to make Democrats wish they had never called for an FBI investigation in the first place: call Michael Avenatti and John Clune in for questioning.
Michael Avenatti is the lawyer for Julie Swetnick who ludicrously claimed that Kavanaugh was involved in multiple gang-rapes. After questioning Avenatti, Republicans should guide public discussion into whether or not lawsuits should be filed against him for slander. John Clune is the lawyer who coached Deborah Ramirez into remembering that Brett Kavanaugh had exposed himself to her in college. The FBI should similarly bring Clune in for questioning while Republicans publicly discuss whether or not he exploited Deborah Ramirez by coaching her and pressuring her to come forward.
If Republicans follow this advice, the Democrats will not call for an extension of the FBI investigation. Instead, they will beg for the FBI investigation to stop. They will call the FBI "politicized" and "partisan," which will directly contradict their own words at the Senate hearing. Americans will remember. And, the Democrats' credibility will be gone. Kavanaugh's name will be (mostly) restored.
Remember, Flake is just a flake. Avenatti and Clune are unethical Democrat operatives. It's time to direct your anger in the right direction, Republicans.