The day after Christine Blasey Ford appeared before the Senate Judiciary Committee to testify that Brett Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her when they were teenagers, the president called her testimony “very credible.” “I thought her testimony was very compelling, and she looks like a very fine woman to me. A very fine woman,” he said. “She was a very credible witness. She was very good in many respects.”
Four days later, he appeared at a campaign rally and repeatedly mocked Ford for details of the alleged assault that she did not remember.
On Monday, Trump took things even further, saying that the allegations made against Kavanaugh were part of a conspiracy aimed at derailing his Supreme Court appointment. “Now they’re thinking about impeaching a brilliant jurist, a man that did nothing wrong, a man that was caught up in a hoax that was set up by the Democrats,” Trump told reporters, referring to the support among some Democrats for impeaching Kavanaugh. “It was all made up, it was fabricated, and it’s a disgrace,” Trump concluded. “And I think it’s really gonna show you something come November 6th.”
Trump is latching onto the nascent push to impeach Kavanaugh because he believes that the issue will motivate Republican voters, many of whom are angry at the way that Democrats treated the judge. The enthusiasm gap among registered voters has narrowed in recent weeks, which some observers believe is tied to Kavanaugh’s nomination. While Kavanaugh is broadly unpopular, Trump is hoping that he can motivate voters in states like South Dakota and Tennessee. It’s a similar strategy to the one Trump used during Alabama’s special election, when Republican Senate nominee Roy Moore was accused of preying on teenagers. In that case, Trump whipped up voters in defense of Moore—but came up short.