The father of a Parkland shooting victim tried and failed to introduce himself to Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh on Tuesday, in a moment that was captured on video and immediately became a point of speculation about whether he was intentionally snubbed.
Fred Guttenberg has become an activist against gun violence since his 14-year-old daughter Jaime died in the Parkland massacre on Feb. 14.
Kavanaugh had just been told there would be a 30-minute lunch break in the chaotic confirmation hearing when Guttenberg approached him as he stood from his seat.
Guttenberg quickly tweeted about the interaction with the judge and framed it as a snub, setting up a back-and-forth with the White House and a firestorm on social media.
"Put out my hand to introduce myself as Jaime Guttenberg's dad," he wrote. "He pulled his hand back, turned his back to me and walked away."
It began when Sen. Dianne Feinstein, a Democrat from California, told Kavanaugh about some of the people in attendance at the hearing. She mentioned "Fred Guttenberg, the father of Jaime, one of 17 killed in the Parkland shooting," as Kavanaugh looked at the senator.
Later, the break was announced, and Guttenberg approached Kavanaugh.
Kavanaugh briefly looked up at Guttenberg, whose hand was outstretched, before turning around and continuing to exit.
A security guard next to Kavanaugh followed him out, while Guttenberg continued to yell after him.
Here's a view from Guttenberg's side:
Here's a view from the other side:
Here's the video head-on:
It's unclear if Kavanaugh knew who Guttenberg was or could hear him.
Guttenberg can be heard saying "she was murdered in Parkland" after Kavanaugh had turned and left.
White House deputy press secretary Raj Shah disputed Guttenberg's description of events.
He quote-tweeted him, saying that Kavanaugh was approached by "an unidentified individual" and added that "before the Judge was able to shake his hand, security had intervened."
Guttenberg replied to Shah and noted that he'd been introduced by Feinstein earlier.
"No security involved. He turned and walked away," wrote Guttenberg.
Shah then tweeted another video of the incident, saying it "clearly shows security intervened when Judge Kavanaugh was approached."
But the video doesn't completely back up Shah's claim — a security guard can be seen sliding past Guttenberg and accompanying Kavanaugh out, but the video doesn't show a guard stopping Guttenberg.