Butterfield questions Kavanaugh's 'past conduct, judicial temperament'

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Wilson's congressman says he's "extremely disappointed" in the Senate's confirmation of Judge Brett Kavanaugh as the United States' 114th Supreme Court justice.

U.S. Rep. G.K. Butterfield, a Wilson Democrat representing North Carolina's 1st Congressional District, expressed concern over the allegations of sexual misconduct Kavanaugh faces and predicted the appellate judge and former White House counsel for President George W. Bush will bring partisan politics to the high court bench.

"Now more than ever, our country needs a Supreme Court justice who will rise above ideology, protect the rights of all Americans and preserve our system of checks and balances by stopping presidential abuse of executive power," Butterfield said. "Unfortunately, nothing in Judge Kavanaugh's record or past have shown he will be such a justice."

Butterfield — who served for a year on the North Carolina Supreme Court after then-Gov. Mike Easley appointed him and was a Superior Court judge for 12 years — released a statement on Kavanaugh within minutes of his Saturday afternoon nomination.

""In moving forward with a confirmation to a lifetime seat on our nation's highest court, there should not be unresolved questions surrounding a nominee's past conduct or his judicial temperament," Butterfield said. "The sexual assault allegations brought forward by Dr. Blasey Ford and others against Judge Kavanaugh and the partisan fury he displayed at last Thursday's hearing raise very serious questions about Judge Kavanaugh's honesty, temperament and ability to be an impartial justice."

Butterfield said the 50-48 confirmation vote marks "the disturbing culmination of a longtime conservative legal movement and a Republican majority so hell-bent on advancing their agenda that they rammed through a Supreme Court nominee amid disturbing allegations that have yet to be fully addressed or investigated."

Republican Roger Allison, Butterfield's 1st Congressional District opponent in next month's general election, had not publicly reacted to the Kavanaugh vote Saturday afternoon. In the 2nd Congressional District, which includes western Wilson County, Republican U.S. Rep. George Holding had not released a statement as of 5:30 p.m.