Following a week of unexpected twists and turns in Brett Kavanaugh’s increasingly embattled Supreme Court nomination, yet another new detail has emerged: The judge had a gay roommate in college.
As his former roommate tells The Cut, the experience made him no fan of Kavanaugh’s.
In a story published Wednesday, Yale University alumnus Kit Winter claims he shared a dorm with Kavanaugh after switching room assignments. Winter, a punk rock devotee with “peroxide blond hair,” shared a triple with Kavanaugh and James Roche, who voiced support for accuser Deborah Ramirez after she claimed the SCOTUS nominee exposed himself to her at a party.
Ramirez is one of at least three women to come forward with sexual allegations against the former D.C. circuit court judge in the past week. A fourth has allegedly approached a police precinct in Montgomery County, Md.
While Winter’s account does not include claims of sexual misconduct, his recollection of their freshman year as roommates correlates with prior accounts of Kavanaugh’s character. He describes the “social dynamic” in the three-man suite as “nonexistent to the point that Winter felt uncomfortable.”
“From the start, Winter and Kavanaugh barely acknowledged one another’s existence,” Winter claims. “He remembers no conversation between them.”
While Winter describes the situation as “weird,” he suggests that his sexual orientation may have had something to do with the “silent and charged” atmosphere. He had recently came out to his parents as gay, living on the Lower East Side in New York City in the months before he enrolled at the New Haven campus.
Lori Adams, a former Yale classmate, says Kavanaugh and Winter were doomed from the start.
“Jocks were often the anathema of gay people at Yale at the time,” she tells The Cut. “They didn’t treat them well. I had gay friends who were stalked, followed home, their doors beaten in, things like that.”
The tension Winter felt in the apartment — and on the then-conservative Ivy League campus — escalated to a boiling point one evening when he allegedly discovered a “dead pigeon nailed to his door.” The bird, he notes, wasn’t pinned to the door of their shared suite but “his own bedroom door.”
“I thought it was a very clear message: ‘We don’t like you, and we don’t want you here,’” he remembers. “I didn’t know who it was who didn’t want me here. I didn’t know who had done it.”
Winter never investigated the incident. But he claims it would have taken “serious intent” to nail a pigeon through “dense wood.”
“It would take some real hammering to get a pigeon nailed to that door,” he says.
While Winter never cites Kavanaugh as being responsible for the vandalism, the report appears to confirm how his accusers characterize his behavior during the judge’s school days. Winter describes his one-time dormmate as one of a cadre of “loud, obnoxious frat boy-like drunks” who prided themselves as being some of Yale’s heaviest drinkers.
In a New Yorker report detailing Ramirez’ accusations, Roche — the third occupant in their dorm — described Kavanaugh as “frequently, incoherently drunk.”
Now the CEO of a tech company in San Francisco, Roche called Ramirez’ allegations credible.
“Is it believable that she was alone with a wolfy group of guys who thought it was funny to sexually torment a girl like Debbie?” he claimed. “Yeah, definitely. Is it believable that Kavanaugh was one of them? Yes.”
Another Kavanaugh accuser, Christine Blasey Ford, is expected to testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee this week. The Palo Alto professor, who claims the 53-year-old attempted to rip her clothes off at a high school party when they were teens, will reportedly submit four statements from people she told about the alleged assault.
Meanwhile, Julie Swetnick came forward on Wednesday to claim that Kavanaugh and his friends would spike the punch at high school parties so female students “could then be ‘gang raped’ in a side room or bedroom by a ‘train’ of numerous boys.”
“I have a firm recollection of seeing boys lined up outside rooms at many of these parties waiting for their ‘turn’ with a girl inside the room,” she wrote in a sworn affidavit.
Swetnick alleges she was assaulted at one such party while Kavanaugh was present.
Kavanaugh was nominated in July by President Donald Trump to fill the spot vacated by Justice Anthony Kennedy, who announced his retirement this year. While Kennedy was a moderate who routinely ruled in favor of LGBTQ rights, critics say Kavanaugh would fall to the right of every sitting Supreme Court justice except for Clarence Thomas.
Very little is known about Kavanaugh’s views on LGBTQ people, although Winter’s recollection may help fill in the gaps for some.
Image via Getty