After a contentious path to become the next Associate Justice of the Supreme Court, Brett Kavanaugh was sworn in today in a public ceremony, following a private ceremony on Saturday. His wife Ashley, and their two children stood by his side as he was ceremonially sworn in on Monday night. Here are photos from the ceremony.
Kavanaugh shared some words with the public during his ceremony, and President Donald Trump also spoke. First Lady Melania Trump was not at the swearing-in ceremony due to a longstanding prior commitment, her spokesman said.
Ashley and Brett have been married since 2004. Ashley was Personal Secretary to President George W. Bush and worked in the White House at the same time as Brett Kavanaugh, before they were married. Ashley and Brett met while they both worked for the White House. Brett was associate counsel and then staff secretary when he met Ashley, while she was Bush’s secretary. Bush appointed Kavanaugh to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit in 2006.
They have two daughters, Margaret and Liza. Their first daughter was born just 13 months after they were married. During his testimony about Ford’s allegations, Kavanaugh said that his 10-year-old daughter suggested they pray for Ford.
Technically today’s swearing-in ceremony was a ceremonial one, since he was already sworn into the Supreme Court on the same day that the Senate voted to confirm him.
After the accusations against her husband came out, Ashley received death threats, USA Today reported. She received threatening emails at work, where she’s the town manager. They included messages like “My condolences to you for being married to a rapist. Although you probably deserve it,” and “F*** YOU AND YOUR RAPIST HUSBAND.” She continued to stand by her husband publicly despite the messages.
Kavanaugh’s parents were also at the ceremony.
Supreme Court Justices must all take two oaths before serving. One is a 62-word oath required by all federal judges, and the other is a constitutional oath. Kavanaugh took both of those on Saturday after he was voted in, so today’s swearing in was purely for ceremonial purposes. However, that’s not without precedent. When Samuel Alito was appointed in 2006, the Senate voted to confirm him on January 31. He took both oaths the same day in a private ceremony attended by members of the Supreme Court. The next day, he took the constitutional oath a second time publicly in a ceremony hosted by President George W. Bush. He then had an investiture ceremony on February 16.