Published: Mon, September 24, 2018
Worldwide | By Gretchen Simon

Kavanaugh-Ford Hearing Lookahead

Kavanaugh-Ford Hearing Lookahead

A days-long back and forth over the timing and terms of a hearing with Mr Kavanaugh and Christine Blasey Ford, the woman accusing him of sexually assaulting her when they were teenagers, appeared to end on Sunday with the announcement that they would appear separately on Thursday before the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Kavanaugh, who had unequivocally denied Ford's allegations, immediately denied the new accusations as well, and the White House gave no signal that President Trump was inclined to withdraw Kavanaugh's nomination.

White House spokeswoman Kerri Kupec called the new allegation part of a "coordinated smear campaign by the Democrats created to tear down a good man".

The newest allegation published Sunday night comes as another Kavanaugh accuser, Christine Blasey Ford, is expected to testify Thursday before the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Within minutes, Senate Judiciary Committee staff sent an email to Avenatti asking for information to promptly start an inquiry.

Tensions have been running on overdrive since Ford went public last week with her allegation that Kavanaugh assaulted her when they in high school.

The allegations cause more headaches for Senate Republicans and Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, who on Friday told the Value Voters Summit in Washington that Kavanaugh would be on the Supreme Court "in the very near future". Grassley's staff also agreed to let Ford testify without Kavanaugh in the room, for there to be only one camera in the room, "adequate" breaks and a high security presence.

"The Senate simply can not in good conscience vote on this nomination without a full fair FBI investigation of all these allegations", he said.

We are not going to turn over to the other side how many witnesses to call.

"I remember hearing and being mortified that this was out there", she said.

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The identity of the fourth person at the alleged party where Ford claims to have been assaulted turned out to be Leland Ingham Keyser, who describes herself as a "lifelong friend" of Ford's.

Grassley had set several deadlines since Friday for Ford to decide whether and how she would testify before the panel. For Kavanaugh to be confirmed, Republicans can only afford to lose the support of two GOP members, if all Democrats oppose the nomination.

They have also accepted the committee's decision not to subpoena Mark Judge, a Kavanaugh friend who Ford asserts was present when the incident occurred in the eighties.

"This is another serious, credible, and disturbing allegation against Brett Kavanagh", said Senator Mazie Hirono, of Hawaii. "If Republicans were to fail to defend and confirm such an obviously and eminently qualified and decent nominee", Ralph Reed, the founder of the Faith and Freedom Coalition, told the New York Times, "then it will be very hard to motivate and energize faith-based and conservative voters in November".

The White House continued to stand behind Justice Kavanaugh.

"Dr. Ford will tell her story in the face of an impossible choice and vile bullying by Republican leadership", said Democratic Senator Richard Blumenthal of CT, a Judiciary Committee member.

"What we need to move to is having that middle ground spectrum where we're enabling independent, neutral, sensitive investigation of a complaint while protecting the complainant's rights and safety, and coming to a fair, independent conclusion to that". Ford said she will testify this week in front of the Senate Judiciary Committee. She added that she recalled Kavanaugh next to her, pulling up his trousers.

"After six days of carefully assessing her memories and consulting with her attorney, Ramirez said that she felt confident enough of her recollections..."

The moment during Donald Trump's presidential campaign when he issued a list of potential Supreme Court nominees prescreened by conservative ideologues guaranteed the extreme politicization we are witnessing.

Durbin told ABC's "This Week" that some Republicans "reached out to Democratic senators and assured them that they are looking to this as kind of a determination as to how their final vote" on Kavanaugh is cast.

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