Brett Kavanaugh Refuses to Shake Hand of Father Who Lost Daughter In Parkland Shooting
Brett Kavanaugh, Trump’s nominee for the open seat on the Supreme Court, is currently going through the process of Congressional hearings before his confirmation. He’s facing questions from America’s legislators regarding his past work and his positions as a potential SCOTUS Justice. However, one member of the public says Kavanaugh wasn’t willing to face a question from him.
Fred Guttenberg is the father of Jaime Guttenberg, one of the victims of the mass shooting at Marjorie Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland Florida this past February. Since brutally losing his daughter, Guttenberg has thrown himself into political action, fighting to prevent the next such tragedy. On Tuesday morning, Guttenberg turned to Twitter to share his experience in greeting Kavanaugh between sessions.
Just walked up to Judge Kavanaugh as morning session ended. Put out my hand to introduce myself as Jaime Guttenberg’s dad. He pulled his hand back, turned his back to me and walked away. I guess he did not want to deal with the reality of gun violence.
Associated Press photojournalist Andrew Harnik was able to corroborate Guttenberg’s description of the interaction, tweeting a photo of Guttenberg trying to shake Kavanaugh’s hand. Kavanaugh can be seen holding both of his own hands close to his body, keeping a stiff posture rather than a responsive one to being approached. Harnik confirms in his own description that the SCOTUS nominee would not shake hands with Guttenberg.
Fred Guttenberg, the father of Jamie Guttenberg who was killed in the shooting in Parkland, Fla., left, tries to shake hands with @realDonaldTrump's Supreme Court nom., Brett Kavanaugh, right, during a lunch break. Kavanaugh did not shake his hand. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik) @ap pic.twitter.com/smcCGuLT6X
— Andrew Harnik (@andyharnik) September 4, 2018
The episode was also captured on video, seen below:
— Tommy Christopher (@tommyxtopher) September 4, 2018
Covering Brett Kavanaugh’s positions on Second Amendment issues, SCOTUS Blog cited the nominee’s own statement that he would have voted to strike down a ban on semi-automatic rifles, and registration requirements, but notes that his reasoning is historical application, and by that same reasoning, Kavanaugh might support other specific restrictions, such as requiring a permit to carry a concealed weapon.
While Fred Guttenberg didn’t share exactly what he had hoped to say to Donald Trump’s Supreme Court nominee, he did thank New Jersey Senator Bob Menendez for a response to Kavanaugh’s position on a ban of certain rifles. To Kavanaugh’s suggestion that the rifles often termed ‘assault weapons’ cannot be restricted because they are currently in common use, Menendez replied, “Well yes, they are in common use – in Orlando and Las Vegas and Newtown and Parkland,” and called for a ban on these weapons and a concerted effort to prevent Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation.