Members of the House of Representatives have no say in whether professor Christine Blasey Ford's accusations against Judge Brett Kavanaugh sink his Supreme Court nomination.
But as much as the contentious confirmation fight over Kavanaugh played out on television screens across the country on Thursday has put vulnerable Democratic senators in the spotlight, it may be at-risk House Republicans who ultimately feel the most heat.
The counter-intuitive dynamic is rooted in the midterms map: Whereas many of the key Senate battlegrounds are deeply Republican states where President Donald Trump won handily in 2016, the fight for the House is taking place in suburban districts in states like California, Pennsylvania and New York — areas with high proportions of college-educated women who could be particularly moved by Ford's allegations and her emotional testimony to the Senate.
"This hearing, and the entire Supreme Court fight, actually may do more to hurt the GOP in House ... than it does in the Senate, despite the fact that senators are voting on it," said one House Democratic campaign veteran. "Mitch McConnell and (Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman) Chuck Grassley may be helping end the Republican majority in Congress."
While some Republicans said a capable House candidate would come out of this debate unscathed, other party operatives fear the spectacle that engulfed the Senate Judiciary Committee Thursday could deepen misgivings among voters -- particularly women -- about the Republican Party, which has consistently underperformed in generic polling leading during this midterm election cycle.
A GOP campaign operative put it bluntly: "The women are gone. It's all about the base."From KABC-TV:
More than half of California found Christine Blasey Ford's story believable, and about one-third found Brett Kavanaugh's testimony believable, according to an exclusive Eyewitness News poll conducted by Survey USA.
The poll, which queried 1,100 adults from California, found that 60 percent found Ford's story believable, and 35 percent found Kavanaugh's testimony believable. The poll also found that California was split when asked if Kavanaugh has the temperament to be a justice on the Supreme Court -- 41 percent said yes; 47 percent said no; 11 percent they were not sure.