It wasn’t a good opening day for Brett Kavanaugh
Tuesday was the most important day of Kavanaugh’s professional life. As Donald Trump’s second Supreme Court nominee, the eyes of the political world were squarely on his appearance before the U.S. Senate.
But it was a decidedly human moment that could end up making the biggest impression.
During a break in the hearing, Fred Guttenberg attempted to shake Kavanaugh’s hand. Guttenberg is the father of Jamie Guttenberg, who was murdered during the Parkland mass shooting earlier this year.
Here’s the video: @fred_guttenberg tells Kavanaugh that his daughter "was murdered in Parkland” and holds out his h… https://t.co/4ZoHclBG3B— Shannon Watts (@Shannon Watts) 1536085516
In a shocking moment, Kavanaugh paused to look at Guttenberg before turning his back and walking away before a security guard quickly stepped in between the two men.
Photo by Saul Loeb/Getty Images.
Photo by Brandan Smilowski/Getty Images.
Just walked up to Judge Kavanaugh as morning session ended. Put out my hand to introduce myself as Jaime Guttenber… https://t.co/OhU9rlYRec— Fred Guttenberg (@Fred Guttenberg) 1536080589
The moment was as strange as it was shocking.
Twitter quickly erupted in understandable outrage.
Fred Guttenberg, the father of Jamie Guttenberg who was killed in the shooting in Parkland, Fla., left, tries to sh… https://t.co/6RWYF0rswm— Andrew Harnik (@Andrew Harnik) 1536084276
Wow, here you can hear @fred_guttenberg telling Kavanaugh that his daughter "was murdered in Parkland," and Kavanau… https://t.co/0JEgAueg47— Tommy moderna-vaX-Topher (@Tommy moderna-vaX-Topher) 1536084394
Fred Guttenberg is one of the most wonderful people I know. Mr. Kavanaugh, 4 year olds have better manners than yo… https://t.co/aG8bYGbX1y— X González (@X González) 1536093817
In a follow-up tweet, Guttenberg made it clear this wasn’t an attempted political stunt, even if that’s what it has rapidly evolved into.
To be clear, I was invited by Senator Feinstein to attend today. Anyone who knows me knows I will talk to anyone.… https://t.co/Rqfu5PJ8CH— Fred Guttenberg (@Fred Guttenberg) 1536100501
No matter what Brett Kavanaugh thinks about gun laws, or how nervous he might have been in the moment, there’s no excuse for turning his back on someone who literally just offered his hand in greeting.