GASTON COUNTY, N.C. - The Senate will take a key vote Friday to advance the Supreme Court nomination of Brett Kavanaugh.
The Senators went into a secret room to review the FBI's investigation into allegations made by Christine Blasey Ford, that Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her in high school.
It's a critical moment for Kavanaugh's confirmation and also for the fight to bring awareness to sexual assault.
- 'Brett has not told the truth': NC State professor says college classmate was heavy drinker
- Kavanaugh hearing: 'I am innocent of these charges' (live updates)
- Julie Swetnick steps forward as third accuser; Brett Kavanaugh denies accusations
- Kavanaugh vote: Flake, Coons detail their crucial role in delaying the vote
- Many women line up in support of Kavanaugh
Gaston County Sheriff Alan Cloninger entered the debate with a controversial Facebook post.
Cloninger said a meme he posted on his social media site was only up for about an hour before he received a complaint and took it down.
However, someone took a screenshot of the meme, which has been shared 65 times.
Cloninger is now apologizing for his post.
The meme Cloninger reposted was a swipe at the contentious hearing for Kavanaugh.
The meme is of two children. The boy's hand placed on the girl's rear with a caption, "Well Billy, there went your chance to be on the Supreme Court.”
"Didn't mean to offend nobody, wasn't taking sides,” Cloninger said. "I wasn't commenting to make fun of anything. I was just sharing it, show other folks what other people are thinking about the situation."
The post drew angry comments online and raised eyebrows.
"I think a public official shouldn't post something irresponsible like that,” Gaston County resident Donna Allen said.
Cloninger has been a long-time supporter of the Domestic Violence Shelter headed by his wife for decades.
He recently posted a video for Domestic Violence Awareness and a couple reposted a rape survivor's story.
"I would hope that it was just a lapse in judgment,” voter Karen Webster Turner said.
Channel 9 asked the sheriff what would he say to assault survivors who may see the meme and worry about coming to the officer for help.
He said, "I hope they know I work to protect anybody and everybody."
Read more top trending stories on wsoctv.com:
- Suspect identified in SC shooting that killed 1 officer, injured 6
- Jury finds former UNCC quarterback Kevin Olsen not guilty in rape trial
- Racist, sexual comments shouted during high school volleyball game
- WATCH: Keith Monday's forecast outlook
- Gastonia police confirm Maddox Ritch was in park before disappearance
© 2019 Cox Media Group.