Woman comes forward to accuse Kavanaugh of sexual misconduct

Larry Hoffman
September 20, 2018

Christine Blasey Ford discussed her accusation in an interview with The Washington Post.

Without Flake's support, the Senate could have to bypass the Judiciary Committee and directly vote on Kavanaugh's nomination.

Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley said Sunday that he found the timing of the allegations, before a scheduled Thursday committee vote on Kavanaugh, "disturbing".

Ford's attorney Lisa Banks told Anderson Cooper on "CNN's Anderson Cooper 360" that Ford will talk with the committee but added, "She is not prepared to talk with them at a hearing on Monday".

"Judge Kavanaugh looks forward to a hearing where he can clear his name of this false allegation".

Republicans had also displayed no willingness to delay a Judiciary panel vote that Grassley had planned for this Thursday to advance the nomination.

Ford said she does not remember some key details of the incident but believes it occurred in the summer of 1982, when she was 15, around the end of her sophomore year at the all-girls Holton-Arms School in Bethesda.

Grassley, an Iowa Republican, had said Tuesday morning that he had yet to hear back from Ford, who says Kavanaugh sexually and physically assaulted her while they were both in high school. If so, it will elevate the debate on Kavanaugh from a Washington squabble to a national zeitgeist moment.

There was no immediate reaction from Trump to the latest developments.

Still, White House counselor Kellyanne Conway said of Ford: "She should not be insulted. I want to hear from her, if she wants to speak, and I want to hear from [Kavanaugh]". She said in a statement on Friday when accusations against Kavanaugh (with Ford still unnamed) first emerged, "Given the seriousness of these allegations, the government needs to find a fair and neutral way for complaints to be investigated". "For any woman, sharing an experience involving sexual assault-particularly when it involves a politically connected man with influence, authority and power-is extraordinarily hard". Now, there are ways around that, yes, but it all takes time. The Republicans move in lockstep, and so do the Democrats.

Both Democratic and Republican senators questioned Feinstein's handling of the allegation. Another letter of support has been signed by more than 700 graduates of her private prep school, Holton-Arms.

Ford said she kept silent about the alleged incident until she was in couples' therapy with her husband in 2012.

When she attempted to scream for help, Kavanaugh put his hand over her mouth.

The White House would not comment further. But they're going to have to slow down and refer this to the FBI for investigation.

"I thought he might inadvertently kill me", Ford the newspaper in an interview published Sunday.

From across the room a very drunken REDACTED said mixed words to Kavanaugh ranging from "go for it" to "stop".

"This has not changed", said White House spokesman Kerri Kupec.

Will they stick together in the view that Kavanaugh is being unfairly treated on accusations that date from decades ago? He told The New York Times that Kavanaugh was a "brilliant student" who loved sports and was not "into anything insane or illegal".

Presidential nominations often unfold according to an intangible logic. Susan Collins of ME and Sen. And in an unusually personal swipe, Schumer said McConnell was showing "unmitigated gall" to oppose delaying Kavanaugh's nomination after refusing for most of 2016 to consider President Barack Obama's nomination of Merrick Garland to the court after Antonin Scalia died.

"I asked Senator Feinstein's office yesterday to join me in scheduling these follow-ups", Grassley wrote. Dianne Feinstein of California, in July. "I don't know enough to make a judgment at this point", Collins said.

He added there would be a public hearing next Monday "to give these recent allegations a full airing". But there was just a hint of an opening for Democrats.

Flake sits on the influential panel, which vets judicial nominees and votes to recommend whether or not they should be confirmed by the full Senate.

"I have no say, I'm the lead Democrat". "So it kind of raises the question, do they want to come to the public hearing or not?" "And if there is real substance to this, it demands a response".

A Republican on the Senate Judiciary Committee, Lindsey Graham, says he's willing to hear from the woman accusing Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh of sexual misconduct while in high school.

The future trajectory of Kavanaugh's nomination is especially hard to predict because of the change in how alleged sexual assaults are now handled in public life, following a long series of scandals that have felled key figures in politics, the media and Hollywood in recent months.

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) called on Sen. "I've said from the beginning that these are very serious allegations and she deserves to be heard".

Earlier, Democratic Senate leader Chuck Schumer of NY said it would be "a deep insult to the women of America" if Grassley did not postpone Thursday's meeting.

Democratic senators had previously assailed Kavanaugh in his hearing over abortion and past rulings on corporations.

By late August, Ford had decided not to come forward, calculating that doing so would upend her life and probably would not affect Kavanaugh's confirmation.

The spectacle of white, middle-aged or elderly men on the GOP bench voting to confirm Kavanaugh in the committee could prove a damaging image in districts that could turn on a younger, more diverse electorate.

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