by Molly Prince
The father of a slain Parkland student was reportedly snubbed by Judge Brett Kavanaugh on Tuesday during the Senate Judiciary Committee hearing, but video released of the encounter may refute his claim.
Fred Guttenberg, whose daughter Jaime was killed in the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, walked up to Kavanaugh as the confirmation hearing took a recess. After he extended his hand to introduce himself, Kavanaugh seemingly whirled around and walked away. Guttenberg promptly took to Twitter to air his grievance.
“Just walked up to Judge Kavanaugh as morning session ended. Put out my hand to introduce myself as Jaime Guttenberg’s dad,” Guttenberg tweeted. “He pulled his hand back, turned his back to me and walked away.”
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.
— Fred Guttenberg (@fred_guttenberg) September 4, 2018
“I guess he did not want to deal with the reality of gun violence,” he continued.
Guttenberg’s tweet instantly gained attention with left-wing advocates seizing upon the potentially misleading interaction. Tommy Vieter, the National Security Council spokesman under former President Barack Obama, called it “awful,” and MSNBC’s Lawrence O’Donnell referred to it as the “most important Kavanaugh confirmation hearing moment so far.”
Raj Shah, White House deputy press secretary, came to the defense of Kavanaugh and disputed the snub.
“As Judge Kavanaugh left for his lunch break, an unidentified individual approached him,” said Shah. “Before the Judge was able to shake his hand, security had intervened.”
Shah backed his claim up with a video of the interaction, noting that it “clearly shows security intervened when [Kavanaugh] was approached.”
MSNBC also released a video from a different angle, showing security more clearly bumping Kavanaugh’s arm, instructing him to exit the hearing. After Kavanaugh’s back was already turned, Guttenberg could be seen mouthing the word “Parkland.”
Fred Guttenberg, father of Parkland victim, Jaime, tries to shakes hands with Brett Kavanaugh: "My daughter was murdered at Parkland."
White House says an "unidentified individual approached" Kavanaugh, but "before the judge was able to shake his hand, security had intervened." pic.twitter.com/6rFXNGvHKT
— MSNBC (@MSNBC) September 4, 2018
Progressive activists have consistently been shouting and interrupting the hearing since it commenced in the morning.
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