Skip to main content

Sign up for our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values. Direct to your inbox.

Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh at a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing in the Dirksen Senate Office Building on Capitol Hill September 27, 2018 in Washington, DC.  (Photo: Melina Mara-Pool/Getty Images)

'What Goes Around, Comes Around': Kavanaugh's Snarl Takes on New Meaning Now That He's a U.S. Supreme Court Justice

"So no matter how genteelly he forces himself to behave in the future," warns Naomi Klein, "remember that the snarl was the truth - not just about his character but about his true purpose on the bench."

Jon Queally

In the wake of Brett Kavanaugh's confirmation and swearing in as the newest associate justice on the U.S. Supreme Court at a subsequent private ceremony, journalist Ashley Feinberg was among those who returned to his charged testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Thursday, September 27 when she declared Saturday afternoon: "I just keep thinking about [his] sneering 'what goes around comes around.'"

Those words by Kavanaugh were delivered as part of a snearing counter-attack aimed at Democratic members of the committee and the wider American public viewing the hearing on televisions nationwide. In part, it looked like this:

But while the overtly partisan remarks and the manner with which he delivered them led many to the conclusion that Kavanaugh did not have the "judicial temperament" to sit on the nation's highest court, author and journalist Naomi Klein posited that it is more important than ever to understand that moment and recognize the profound ramifications it will have going forward now that Justice Kavanaugh is a reality.

As Feinberg's colleague at the Huffington Post, Paul Blumenthal, points out—in a piece titled, "The Coming Kavanaugh Court Doctrine: Democrats Are Unconstitutional"—the threat of "what goes around comes around" could have serious implications for "cases that help Republicans and harm Democrats" in the future.

"Essentially what he did is he took his mask off and he revealed himself as a politician who wears a robe," Jessica Levinson, a Loyola Law School professor, told Blumenthal.

Meanwhile, in her online thread composed on Saturday, Klein argued that the "snarl" Kanavaugh offered during his confirmation hearing is only a taste of what's to come:


Our work is licensed under Creative Commons (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0). Feel free to republish and share widely.

This is the world we live in. This is the world we cover.

Because of people like you, another world is possible. There are many battles to be won, but we will battle them together—all of us. Common Dreams is not your normal news site. We don't survive on clicks. We don't want advertising dollars. We want the world to be a better place. But we can't do it alone. It doesn't work that way. We need you. If you can help today—because every gift of every size matters—please do. Without Your Support We Simply Don't Exist.

Manchin Threatening Key Climate Provision: Reports

"To take it out is to decide that climate change isn't a problem."

Andrea Germanos ·


'Make a Gesture of Humanity': Pope Francis Urges Pharma Giants to Release Covid-19 Vaccine Patents

"There are countries where only three or four percent of the inhabitants have been vaccinated."

Andrea Germanos ·


Manchin Fumes After Sanders Op-Ed in West Virginia Paper Calls Out Obstruction of Biden Agenda

"Poll after poll shows overwhelming support for this legislation," wrote Sanders. "Two Democratic senators remain in opposition, including Sen. Joe Manchin."

Andrea Germanos ·


US to Offer 'Condolence Payments' to Relatives of 10 Civilians Killed in Drone Strike

The Pentagon statement follows a call for President Joe Biden to "show real concern for civilians by taking more meaningful steps to prevent civilian casualties as a result of all U.S. lethal operations."

Andrea Germanos ·


New Filing Reveals Sinema Pads Campaign Coffers With More Pharma and Finance Funds

"This is what someone who's bought and paid for looks like."

Brett Wilkins ·

Support our work.

We are independent, non-profit, advertising-free and 100% reader supported.

Subscribe to our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values.
Direct to your inbox.

Subscribe to our Newsletter.


Common Dreams, Inc. Founded 1997. Registered 501(c3) Non-Profit | Privacy Policy
Common Dreams Logo