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Google identifies Kavanaugh as former White House staff secretary

Supreme Court nominee served in George W. Bush’s White House for five years, but has been a federal judge since 2006

If you search Google for Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, as many might be doing today, Google search is identifying him in a number of places as “Former White House Staff Secretary,” a role he held before becoming a federal judge in 2006.

The information box for Brett Kavanaugh in Google search includes details from Wikipedia. The heading next to his photo identifies him as Former White House Staff Secretary, a role he held before becoming a federal judge.
Photo: Google

Kavanaugh, who faces new hearings Thursday in his nomination to the U.S. Supreme Court, was named to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia in 2006. Before that, according to his appeals court biography, he served for five years in the White House under President George W. Bush. For part of that time, from 2003 to 2006, he was assistant to the president and staff secretary to the president, his bio said.

Judge Merrick Garland, the current chief judge of the same DC Circuit where Kavanaugh currently serves, is identified in Google Search as “Judge.”

The identification as former White House secretary has also been spotted in the past week in Google Trends and in searches done on both desktop and mobile computers. This ID for Kavanaugh was spotted in searches for more than a week. An AJC  journalist made note of it on Sept. 18. 

Google Search identifies Merrick Garland as Judge. He is chief judge of the DC Circuit Court of Appeals, the same court where Brett Kavanaugh serves.

But there are indications Google understands his current job and the one he has been nominated for. A Google search for "Supreme Court nominees" Thursday morning included this list, titled "Who are the justices." 

A Google search for "Supreme Court nominees" on Thursday morning included this related list entitled "Who are the justices." Brett Kavanaugh tops the list, which includes a mix of Supreme Court Justices and those who were nominated but not confirmed.

Brett Kavanaugh tops the list, which includes a mix of Supreme Court Justices and those who were nominated but not confirmed. Included in the latter category is Robert Bork, nominated by President Ronald Reagan in 1987 but rejected by the Senate. The photo for Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg in the search result is decades old. Ginsburg, 85, was appointed to the court in 1993. 

Google Trends search query for Ashley Kavanaugh
Photo: Google Trends

Late on Thursday, Google Trends results for Kavanaugh’s wife, Ashley, identified her as “Political figure,” although Google Search identified her as Brett Kavanaugh’s wife

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