Orrin Hatch is under fire after calling Christine Blasey Ford an “attractive” and “pleasing” witness during Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh’s hearing confirmation. Ford, who accused Kavanaugh of sexually assaulting her while the two were in high school, recounted her sexual assault during Kavanaugh’s confirmation hearing.
Asked if he found Ford a credible witness, Hatch responded with: “I don’t think she’s un-credible. I think she’s an attractive, good witness.”
Twitter immediately lit up with reactions to Hatch’s comment. Hatch’s deputy chief of staff and communications director Matt Whitlock sent out several tweets to clarify Hatch’s remark, stating: “Hatch uses ‘attractive’ to describe personalities, not appearances. If you search his past quotes you’ll see he’s used it consistently for years for men and women he believed has compelling personalities.”
However, that didn’t stop offended Twitter users from flooding the social media page with outraged comments. Most users spoke about how inappropriate the comment was, especially regarding a woman who is reliving her sexual assault on live television.
User Brenna wrote: “You kiddin’ me? A woman testifies about sexual assault. A person with power to believe her, instead comments on the pleasing appearance of her body.”
Another user followed up with: “Of all the things to say about a woman who just testified about having been sexually assaulted? wtf, Sen. Orrin Hatch.”
Elana Schor wrote a follow-up tweet, stating: “Hatch said it’s too early gauge Ford’s credibility but told me she is “a good witness. She’s articulate. She’s an attractive person.” (Attractive, in context, did not sound like a reference to looks.) But don’t forget, Hatch is among Kavanaugh’s biggest backers.”
Despite Hatch’s spokespeople attempting to clarify his comment, angry users continued to question how and why Hatch thought it was appropriate to comment on Ford’s appearance, regardless of what he actually meant by the word.
“Not the best way for a older, male Republican senator to describe Ford,” another user wrote.
Rex Santus wrote: “Orrin Hatch thought a recess from Christine Blasey Ford’s testimony was a good time to call her ‘attractive’ and ‘pleasing.'”
Matt Fuller even screenshot Whitlock’s page to show how many fires Hatch’s people were trying to put out after the comment.
This is a developing story. Heavy will continue to update as more information is known.