Dozens of protesters opposed to the confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court targeted the offices of swing vote Republican senators Thursday to pressure them to vote against President Donald Trump’s nominee, who is denying allegations he sexually assaulted a woman when they were both in high school in the 1980s.
Capitol Hill Police said they arrested 56 people on Thursday related to Kavanaugh protests on Capitol Hill. Roughly two dozen of those were arrested outside the office of Sen. Bob Corker, a Tennessee Republican, according to a police officer on the scene.
Defiantly blocking the hallway in front of Corker’s office, the protesters, representing a coalition of progressive groups, chanted, “We believe women” and “Corker vote no” as US Capitol Police removed them.
The senator was not there, his staff said.
The protesters then moved down the hall to the office of Sen. Susan Collins, a moderate Maine Republican and a key vote who supported the Judiciary Committee delaying a vote on the judge to get testimony from his accuser, Dr. Christine Blasey Ford.
They spoke at length to Collins’ staffers in her main lobby, imploring the senator to oppose Kavanaugh.
“Dr. Ford should not be put on trial,” one protester said. “As someone who survived sexual assault, please do not put a monster on the Supreme Court.”
At the office of Sen. Jeff Flake, an Arizona Republican, one protester compared the Kavanaugh confirmation process to the incendiary confirmation hearings of Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas.
No one was arrested at Collins’ or Flake’s offices.
The protesters continued to visit the offices of key senators throughout the day, including Sen. Chuck Grassley of Iowa, the Republican who chairs the Senate Judiciary Committee.