White House Fears Kavanaugh Could Crack During Senate Testimony After He Looked ‘Shaken’ During Fox News Interview: Report

News & Politics  Everything could swing on Thursday’s testimony.

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President Donald Trump and many of his allies have grown aggressive in their defenses of Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, lashing out at the women who accuse him of sexual misconduct and assault.

But according to a new report from the Associated Press, even as Kavanaugh’s defenders strike a confident pose, they are far from certain about his prospects at being approved by the Senate.

The report notes that after a Fox News interview of Kavanaugh and his wife Ashley Estes Kavanaugh aired Monday night, there were mixed reactions in the White House:

After the interview aired, the sense in the West Wing was relief that Kavanaugh was able to present an image to counter the allegations. Yet there remained concern among aides, and Trump himself, as to how Kavanaugh, who appeared shaken at times during the interview, would hold up facing far fiercer questioning from Senate Democrats on Thursday, according to a White House official not authorized to speak publicly about private conversations.

On CNN Tuesday night, New York Times reporter Maggie Haberman likewise reported that Trump and others were not thrilled with Kavanaugh’s performance in the interview.

During the interview, Kavanaugh was repetitive and looked startled. He repeatedly said he was looking for a “fair process” and that he just wanted to be “heard,” even though his Republican allies have had a stranglehold over the entire process and no one has denied him the ability to respond to his accusers. He denied the accusations against him in their entirety, but he also made several dubious claims that threw more doubt on his credibility.

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Fox News’ Ingraham Disavows White Supremacists’ Embrace Of Her ‘Racist’ Anti-Immigrant Tirade

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Fox News host Laura Ingraham stood by her controversial anti-immigrant tirade on Thursday and disavowed the white nationalists and “one racist freak” who endorsed her on-air remarks.

Although Ingraham didn’t name the “freak,” she was likely referring to former KKK leader David Duke, who tweeted praise for her comments in which she lamented the “massive demographic changes” caused by immigration and said “in some parts of the country, it does seem like the America that we know and love doesn’t exist anymore.”

“I want to start tonight by addressing my commentary at the top of last night’s show,” Ingraham said. “A message to those who are distorting my views, including all white nationalists and especially one racist freak whose name I will not even mention. You do not have my support. You don’t represent my views and you are antithetical to the beliefs I hold dear. The purpose of last night’s angle was to point out the rule of law, secure borders, is something that used to bind our country together.”

“Despite what some may be contending, I made explicitly clear that my commentary had nothing to do with race or ethnicity,” she continued, defending her Wednesday monologue. “But rather a shared goal of keeping America safe and her citizens safe and prosperous. Furthermore, as I have said repeatedly on the show, merit-based immigration does wonders for our country’s economy, our way of life, and how we define our country.”

She added: “I want to make it really clear that my concern will continue to remain with the families who have suffered the tragic results of illegal immigration, the children put in dangerous and unfair situations at the border and all those border agents around the country who work to keep our country safe.”

Ingraham’s anti-immigration commentary drew sharp rebukes from both sides of the aisle, including conservative commentator S.E. Cupp.

“To many, that sounded racist,” Cupp wrote for CNN. “That’s because it is.”

Cupp wasn’t buying Ingraham’s explanation on Thursday night:

MSNBC’s Stephanie Ruhle also blasted Ingraham’s explanation: “She said illegal and legal immigration… how could this possibly be about law and order if you’re going after legal immigration? At worst these are the words of a white supremacist. At best it’s playing on anxiety of a part of our culture.”

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