Associate Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh.
Tom Williams-Pool/Getty Images
- Morton’s says it has been swamped with fake reservations after it defended Brett Kavanaugh’s “right” to “eat dinner.”
- Kavanaugh was dining at a DC location when demonstrators gathered outside to protest the overturn of Roe v. Wade.
- The justice left out a back door, with Morton’s later saying the demonstration was “void of decency.”
A steakhouse chain is being flooded with phone calls and fake reservations over its defense of Associate Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh’s “right” to “eat dinner” at one of its restaurants, where demonstrators gathered outside to protest his support of overturning Roe v. Wade.
Morton’s this week sent a memo to its restaurant managers telling them to brace for more backlash to its remarks defending the jurist, Politico reported Saturday. Kavanaugh was one of five justices who voted last month to overturn Roe, the landmark 1973 decision that legalized abortion in the United States and afforded a constitutional right to the procedure.
“Currently we are experiencing a massive wave (trending at #2 on social media now) of negative response to our comments yesterday as well as being bombarded at the local level with phone calls and fake reservations on Open Table,” Scott Crain, the SVP and COO of Morton’s, wrote to restaurant managers in an email obtained by Politico.
“I am making you aware of this because there is a good chance that your restaurants will also potentially have some people reaching out for comment and/or making (bogus) reservations over the next few days,” Crain continued. “As I stated yesterday, our comment is always ‘No Comment.’ We don’t respond, we don’t retweet, we don’t post on Instagram or Facebook, we don’t do anything.”
“Again, we do NOT insert our political beliefs at any time – not with an employee, not with a fellow manager, and most certainly NOT with a guest,” he added in the memo.
On Wednesday night, Kavanaugh was dining at a Morton’s restaurant in Washington, D.C., when protestors learned he was at the establishment. A group gathered outside the restaurant and told the manager to kick him out, and Kavanaugh left through a back door at the restaurant, Politico reported at the time.
Following the incident, a Morton’s representative told Politico that the actions of the group were “void of decency.”
“Honorable Supreme Court Justice Kavanaugh and all of our other patrons at the restaurant were unduly harassed by unruly protestors while eating dinner at our Morton’s restaurant. Politics, regardless of your side or views, should not trample the freedom at play of the right to congregate and eat dinner,” the representative said.
“There is a time and place for everything. Disturbing the dinner of all of our customers was an act of selfishness and void of decency,” the representative added.
In addition to the phone calls and phony reservations, the Morton’s restaurant where Kavanaugh dined has seen a handful of 1-star Google reviews opposing its initial statement.
The location’s Yelp page has also temporarily stopped allowing people to post customer reviews due to “increased public attention” centered on the restaurant.
Morton’s did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
After the majority draft opinion overturning Roe was leaked in early May, protests sprang up across the country, with abortion rights activists and Democratic politicians critical of the preliminary decision, which was made even more urgent by the pending “trigger” laws in an array of GOP-controlled states which would effectively outlaw the procedure if the high court decided to overturn the ruling.
When Roe was overturned last month, returning the decision-making about abortion access to the states, liberal activists — some of whom had fought for abortion rights in the 1960s and 1970s — were outraged.
Republicans, who had been pushing for the overturn of Roe for decades, largely applauded the decision.
When the draft opinion leaked, pro-choice protestors showed up near the homes of Kavanaugh, along with Chief Justice John Roberts and Associate Justice Samuel Alito; they showed up to protest at the home of Associate Justice Clarence Thomas after Roe was overturned.
Last month, a man arrested near Kavanaugh’s residence told federal investigators that he wanted to kill the jurist due to his anger over the mass shooting in Uvalde, Tex., and the court’s then-pending decision over Roe.
The individual, Nicholas John Roske, was charged with attempted murder. He has since pled not guilty.
President Joe Biden last month signed into a law a bill that affords security to families of Supreme Court justices.