Allegations derail Kavanaugh confirmation, add possible hearing

Frederick Owens
September 22, 2018

Senate Judiciary Committee staff continue to negotiate with Ford's attorneys but say two of her requests discussed in a conference call with committee staff from both parties on Thursday - to have Kavanaugh testify first and for the committee to subpoena other witnesses like Mark Judge - are "nonstarters", according to a senior Senate Republican source familiar with the discussions.

President Donald Trump fervently defended his Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh on September 21, tweeting that the sexual assault allegations against him are a hit job by the "radical left". She provided therapist notes from well before Kavanaugh was such a public figure.

"Brett Kavanaugh, and I'm not saying anything about anybody else, Brett Kavanaugh is one of the finest human beings you will ever have the privilege of knowing or meeting", Trump said. Kirsten Gillibrand (D) of NY at a press conference with Ford supporters from her former high school on Thursday.

He also repeated a question he asked on Fox News Thursday night in Las Vegas: "The radical left lawyers want the Federal Bureau of Investigation to get involved NOW".

Ford was 15 years old at the time she alleges Kavanaugh attacked her.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) just thoroughly justified Christine Blasey Ford's concerns.

Trump's tweets came as lawyers for Ford continued negotiations with Republicans about conditions under which she might testify next week in front of the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Through her lawyers, Ford said she wouldn't speak to the committee until the FBI investigates the incident, which allegedly occurred while Ford and Kavanaugh were in high school.

Kavanaugh has vehemently denied the allegations.

Kavanaugh will now appear in front of the Senate on Monday to testify against claims made by Christine Blasey Ford that he pinned her down on a bed, groped her and tried to remove her clothes in the early 1980s.

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She told the Post she remembered thinking, "I'm not ever telling anyone this".

Committee Republicans are trying to secure a commitment from Ford to appear at a hearing on Monday.

She said she is willing to testify at earliest on Thursday.

Attorney Debra Katz said Professor Ford, 51, a psychology professor in California, had received death threats and for safety reasons had relocated her family.

Democrats have been loudly echoing several of those points this week, demanding that Republicans slow down their drive to a hearing originally called for Monday morning, and calling on the FBI to do an independent investigation of Ford's story, which they find credible.

President Donald Trump has challenged the woman who has accused his Supreme Court nominee of sexual assault, demanding she provide evidence.

According to Trump, the fact that Ford remained silent until now shows the incident probably never happened - even if this runs counter to what experts say is the typical reaction of sexual assault victims afraid or embarrassed to report.

"He said / she said" is an unfortunate reality of many sexual assault cases; it is not something to which we should aspire. In the poll, conducted from September 11-17, 36% of USA adults surveyed did not want Kavanaugh on the Supreme Court, up 6% points from a similar poll a month earlier, while 31% favored Kavanaugh's appointment. Kavanaugh's confirmation to the lifetime position would be the second of the Trump administration and solidify conservative control of the nation's top court. But he also called for Ford's voice to be heard: "With all of that, I feel that the Republicans-and I can speak for myself-we should go through a process, because there shouldn't be even a little doubt".

"I don't know her values but what she's saying is unproven and I would argue it's unprovable", Bauer said.

Hassan had harsh words for her Republican counterparts as well, who she said "are just setting this hearing up so they can say they listened to her, but they are planning to confirm Judge Kavanaugh no matter what she says".

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