Published: Wed, September 19, 2018
Global News | By Stacy Ballard

Kavanaugh accuser wants FBI investigation before testifying

Kavanaugh accuser wants FBI investigation before testifying

That the president's senior counselor, Kellyanne Conway, swiftly advocated listening to the woman who has accused Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh of sexual assault points to the power of the #MeToo movement - and of women in politics.

"I feel so badly for him that he's going through this", Trump said during the joint news conference with Polish President Andrzej Duda. This is not a man that deserves this, ' Trump told journalists.

Kavanaugh has been accused by 51-year-old Christine Ford of attempted assault at a house party in the 1980s, when the pair were at high school, an accusation Kavanaugh denies. They also want more witnesses besides Kavanaugh and Ford, hoping to avoid what they said would turn into a "he-said-she-said" moment.

Senator Dianne Feinstein, the committee's top Democrat, on Tuesday said the FBI should investigate before further hearings into the claims.

While Kavanaugh intends to return back before the Senate on Monday with or without Ford present, a GOP aide tells CBS News' Nancy Cordes that the committee intends to "leave the opportunity open" for Ford to testify "for as long as possible".

He said he would have shared the letter with fellow Democrats on the Judiciary Committee while redacting identifying information and said Feinstein should have asked Kavanaugh about his character during hearings.

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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 impassioned statement is surely far from her last.

Republicans had also displayed no willingness to delay a Judiciary panel vote that Grassley had planned for this Thursday to advance the nomination. "If they don't have a moral code of their own to determine right from wrong, then that's a problem".

"It's impossible to take this process seriously", Feinstein said.

Democratic committee members say their request to the FBI is not for a criminal investigation, but "appropriate follow-up" to the FBI's background investigation. According to NBC News' Leigh Ann Caldwell, Hatch spoke to Kavanaugh about it, and says the Supreme Court nominee is "honest" and "straightforward". "The responsibility falls to us", Hatch wrote, reiterating Grassley's offer to let Ford testify before the Judiciary Committee.

Kavanaugh is now a judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, widely viewed as the nation's second-most-powerful court.

He still expressed confidence that Kavanaugh would be confirmed, saying, "I'm not concerned about tanking the nomination". Democrats are asking for an Federal Bureau of Investigation inquiry before the matter goes to a US Senate Judiciary Committee while Republicans are backing Kavanaugh, raising questions over the timing of such accusations.

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Democrats see their arguments about treating women fairly as the best hope for either sinking the appellate judge's nomination or, should Kavanaugh win confirmation, amplifying their appeals to female voters in November.

She was referring to the woman who testified in 1991 against Justice Clarence Thomas when he was a nominee over workplace sexual harassment claims. However, he also said that he reached out to Ford "three or four times" and had not received a response.

But the Department of Justice, referring back to a statement released Monday, says the Federal Bureau of Investigation fulfilled its role by forwarding a letter to the White House Counsel's Office.

Feinstein said on Tuesday there should be more than just two witnesses, possibly to include people who Ford previously confided in.

Ford's decision, conveyed in a letter to Senate Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley of Iowa, obtained by CNN, raises the political stakes for Republicans however they choose to respond.

Ford, now a psychology professor at California's Palo Alto University, told The Washington Post that an intoxicated Kavanaugh corralled her into a bedroom at a Maryland party when she was around 15 and he was about 17, held her down on a bed, tried to undress her and held his hand over her mouth when she tried to scream.

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