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Gross Story, Bro

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Remember that list of 65 women Brett Kavanaugh didn’t try to sexually assault? Wonder how well that many women could have known a guy who attended an all-male school? Well, you can probably see where this is going…

The word “Renate” appears at least 14 times in Georgetown Preparatory School’s 1983 yearbook, on individuals’ pages and in a group photo of nine football players, including Judge Kavanaugh, who were described as the “Renate Alumni.” It is a reference to Renate Schroeder, then a student at a nearby Catholic girls’ school.

Two of Judge Kavanaugh’s classmates say the mentions of Renate were part of the football players’ unsubstantiated boasting about their conquests.

“They were very disrespectful, at least verbally, with Renate,” said Sean Hagan, a Georgetown Prep student at the time, referring to Judge Kavanaugh and his teammates. “I can’t express how disgusted I am with them, then and now.”

Judge Kavanaugh’s years at Georgetown Prep, in a Maryland suburb of Washington, are under intense scrutiny because of allegations by Christine Blasey Ford that he sexually assaulted her during high school. Judge Kavanaugh has denied the allegation. He and Dr. Blasey are scheduled to testify Thursday before the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Judge Kavanaugh’s peers have given different accounts of what he was like. But his yearbook provides a contemporaneous glimpse of the elite Catholic school’s hard-drinking atmosphere — Judge Kavanaugh’s personal page boasts, “100 kegs or bust” — and a culture that some describe as disrespectful to women.

This month, Renate Schroeder Dolphin joined 64 other women who, saying they knew Judge Kavanaugh during their high school years, signed a letter to the leaders of the Senate Judiciary Committee, which is weighing Judge Kavanaugh’s nomination. The letter stated that “he has behaved honorably and treated women with respect.”

When Ms. Dolphin signed the Sept. 14 letter, she wasn’t aware of the “Renate” yearbook references on the pages of Judge Kavanaugh and his football teammates.

“I learned about these yearbook pages only a few days ago,” Ms. Dolphin said in a statement to The New York Times. “I don’t know what ‘Renate Alumnus’ actually means. I can’t begin to comprehend what goes through the minds of 17-year-old boys who write such things, but the insinuation is horrible, hurtful and simply untrue. I pray their daughters are never treated this way. I will have no further comment.”

My high school was far from the wokest place on Earth, but I have to say it never occurred to anyone that yearbook pages should be used to send elaborate signals of misogynist humiliation that you need 7 consultations of the Urban Dictionary to decode.

His explanation is, of course, a vintage Trumpian “pull my middle finger” moment:

“Judge Kavanaugh and Ms. Dolphin attended one high school event together and shared a brief kiss good night following that event,” the statement continued. “They had no other such encounter. The language from Judge Kavanaugh’s high school yearbook refers to the fact that he and Ms. Dolphin attended that one high school event together and nothing else.”

Right — all these guys making references to “Renate” were implying that they had accompanied her to the soda fountain and then escorted her home with perhaps a peck on the cheek. I see no flaws in this theory.

I can’t give him direct credit because he seems to delete his tweets every 12 hours, but Yglesias has repeatedly making the point that you can’t believe Kavanaugh anything says because he lies constantly, often about stuff he doesn’t need to lie about. Remember what he said after being nominated:

Brett M. Kavanaugh thanked President Trump for his nomination to the Supreme Court on Monday night. Almost immediately, he made a thoroughly strange and quite possibly bogus claim.

“No president has ever consulted more widely, or talked with more people from more backgrounds, to seek input about a Supreme Court nomination,” Kavanaugh said.

You don’t need to say this about a guy who lacks the attention span to finish a one-page memo of 24-point-font bullet points and whimsically picked a name off a list handed to him by Leonard Leo. He’s bullshitting because he can. It’s the same in this case; it’s not as if he’d lose anyone’s vote by saying “yeah, I was a dumb kid, we had immature views about women and sexuality, but as a father of daughters and husband of a wife etc. etc. etc.” Most of the lies he tells to Congress are about minor stuff. It’s chilling.

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