Read These Powerful Reactions to Christine Blasey Ford’s Testimony

“I am crying. Are you crying?”

James West/Mother Jones

Christine Blasey Ford’s appearance before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Thursday sparked a range of supportive reactions from all corners of the internet. Survivors of sexual abuse and allies expressed solidarity with Ford, and even critics eager to see another conservative jurist elevated to the Supreme Court acknowledged the power of her testimony and the political danger it may pose for Republicans.  

Many observers on social media and cable TV simply acknowledged the emotional devastation of watching Ford tearfully recall details of her alleged assault at the hands of Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh.

Some journalists drew attention to the way Ford interacted with Republican senators, including Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), and noted how it reflects the way women are socialized to be “collegial.”

Other commentators fixated on the clinical terms Ford used to describe her assault and the trauma and anxiety she has experienced in the years since. 

Ford’s testimony even struck a chord with Fox News hosts like Chris Wallace, who called the hearing a “disaster” for Republicans. “Nobody could listen to her deliver those words and talk about the assault and the impact it has had on her life and not have your heart go out to her,” he said. He added, “She obviously was traumatized by an event.” 

Steve Schmidt, who managed John McCain’s 2008 presidential campaign, called the entire event a “political disaster” for Republicans and criticized the strategy of having Arizona sex crimes prosecutor Rachel Mitchell question Ford in lieu of the all-male Republican committee membership doing it themselves. 

Ford’s account of the assault was disputed by some right-wing commentators. On NRATV, the channel run by the National Rifle Association, host Grant Stinchfield said Ford was being used as a “pawn” by “people who hate the Constitution and Judge Kavanaugh.” 

 

Ford has described receiving death threats and hate mail since her name became public weeks ago. “I am here today not because I want to be,” she said during her opening statement. “I am terrified.”