Published: Wed, September 19, 2018
Worldwide | By Isabel Fisher

Trump says ‘hard’ to imagine Kavanaugh did wrong

Trump says ‘hard’ to imagine Kavanaugh did wrong

On Tuesday, Ford's lawyers sent a letter to the Senate Judiciary Committee, which is handling Kavanaugh's confirmation, insisting that the FBI investigate her charge before she testifies to the committee. Republicans want to stay on track - aiming for a confirmation vote before October 1, when the court begins its new term.

Kavanaugh, whose confirmation would tilt the Supreme Court to the right for years to come, had appeared set to sail through Senate confirmation for the vacancy on the nation's top court until Ford, a California professor, went public.

Dr. Christine Blasey Ford, the woman who accused Judge Brett Kavanaugh of sexually assaulting her during their high school years in the 1980s, has moved out of her house and hired private security detail because of death threats she has received since coming forward. It's not a ideal precedent, of course, but both in broad strokes and in specific areas, the allegations made by Anita Hill against Thomas mirror the accusation made by Christine Blasey Ford against Kavanaugh. A panel vote is scheduled for Thursday, just weeks before the congressional midterm elections. The days of Kavanaugh confirmation hearings were often interrupted by protesters, and Republicans accused Democrats, especially those possible 2020 presidential candidates, of grandstanding.

The White House appeared eager to resolve the matter quickly.

In July, Ford initially wrote about her allegation in a letter that was eventually sent to Sen.

With fragile GOP majorities of just 11-10 on the Judiciary committee and 51-49 in the full Senate, Republican leaders had little room for defectors without risking a humiliating defeat of Trump's nominee to replace retired Justice Anthony Kennedy.

"We did drink beer, but I never saw him out of control drunk", Kane said.

Kavanaugh's supporters on the committee will want to vigorously defend him. Neither Collins nor Murkowski faces re-election this fall. Ford was 15 at the time of the alleged incident.

Cornyn said Senate Republicans used a closed-door meeting Monday to agree to the public hearing.

Some Democrats raised questions about whether Grassley's plan was sufficient. She joined the panel as its previously all-male membership was grappling with stinging criticism of its handling of Anita Hill's sexual harassment allegations against then-Supreme Court nominee Clarence Thomas.

Hill supports Ford's request that the FBI investigate the allegation before agreeing to testify at any Capitol Hill hearing. In a statement, the Department of Justice indicated that, in accordance with policy, it forwarded the letter to the White House Counsel's Office but didn't launch an investigation because it didn't deal with a federal crime. He also hired outside investigators to look into complaints and introduced a resolution to expel Democratic Sen.

Underscoring the raw political divisions prompted by the Kavanaugh fight, Feinstein said she'd only learned of the hearing on Twitter. Brett Kavanaugh was already disqualified to serve on the Supreme Court. "Nothing the Federal Bureau of Investigation or any other investigator does would have any bearing on what Dr. Ford tells the committee, so there is no reason for any further delay".

Kavanaugh denies the charge and will apparently tell his side of the story before the Senate Judiciary Committee next Monday.

Kavanaugh has had a relatively smooth confirmation track until the allegations against him were reported last week. McConnell knows that, even with one of the most favorable Senate maps any party ever has enjoyed, the antics of President Donald Trump have helped put the GOP's narrow, two-vote margin in jeopardy. Kavanaugh has since said that he too would be willing to testify under oath as well. "I am, anyway, and I think most of us are".

At the outset, it is unclear what would the modern-day Inspector Javerts have the government do with the unverifiable and dated allegations now levelled against Kavanaugh? The president himself has faced accusations of affairs and unwanted advances - not to mention his taped comments about groping women that emerged shortly before he was elected in 2016. Ford believes Kavanaugh's alleged actions were "attempted rape" and "that if it were not for the severe intoxication of Brett Kavanaugh, she would have been raped", Katz told NBC's "Today" program.

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