Kavanaugh accuser offers to testify next week, but not Monday

Minnie Murray
September 21, 2018

Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y., left, is applauded by demonstrators as the arrive to speak to reporters in support of professor Christine Blasey Ford, who is accusing Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh of a decades-old sexual attack, during a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, Sept. 20, 2018.

While Republicans on the Judiciary Committee had originally planned to hold a hearing with testimony from Kavanaugh and Blasey Ford on Monday, Blasey Ford demurred on Wednesday and requested the FBI investigate the alleged sexual assault before she spoke with the committee.

Ford has alleged that while she and Kavanaugh were at a house party in the early 1980s, when the two were in high school, Kavanaugh drunkenly pinned her to a bed, groped her and put his hand over her mouth to stifle her screams as he tried to take off her clothes.

The left has been having its usual field day with truth, drumming a beat that Christine Blasey Ford is a victim, simply because she pointed a finger Judge Brett Kavanaugh's way, and therefore she has a right to remain hidden in the shadows, shielded from questioning and criticisms and prying eyes into her past because, after all - she is the Victim.

Ford wants Kavanaugh to testify first and then she will tell her story to the committee, a committee staffer said.

Ford's attorneys issued a statement saying there are multiple witnesses that need to be interviewed, not just Ford and Kavanaugh. But Ford's accusation has upended his confirmation process. But both had previously stated that if Ford's allegations are true they'd be disqualifying - and their votes are enough to sink Kavanaugh's bid for the high court.

Republican and Democratic Judiciary Committee staffers spoke with Katz and Ford attorney Lisa Banks by phone on Thursday to negotiate on a potential hearing for next week.

The chairman of the Judiciary Committee, Senator Charles E. Grassley, said through a spokesman late Thursday that he would be consulting with colleagues on how to proceed.

At a Las Vegas rally not long after, Trump praised Kavanaugh as "one of the finest human beings you will ever have the privilege of knowing or meeting" and called his reputation "impeccable". Republicans have largely stood by Kavanaugh's denials.

"She said she wanted to appear but if she changes her mind and refuses to appear, there's not much we can do", Sen. Still, the bare 51-49 Republican majority means they can lose just one vote and still approve him if all Democrats vote no. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), who'd scheduled her to testify Monday.

Will appear at a public hearing but she would like to limit the number of cameras to pool coverage. Hirono said the threats constitute being labeled as "intimidation of a witness".

Katz reiterated that Ford would like the FBI to investigate before her testimony. But that wording fell short of a nonnegotiable demand.

Which would make Democrats very happy, even if - especially if - Kavanaugh is confirmed. A substantial delay could push confirmation past the November elections, when Democrats have a shot at winning Senate control, plus allow more time for unforeseen problems to crop up.

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