Kavanaugh May Be Getting More Unpopular

Kavanaugh May Be Getting More Unpopular
Senate Republicans make counteroffer to Kavanaugh accuser for Wednesday hearing
Senate Republicans on Friday extended a counteroffer to Christine Blasey Ford to testify on Capitol Hill next Wednesday, amid negotiations over whether Ford will elaborate on her allegations against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh in public.

We need to hear from her, said one senior source familiar with the process. Monday is the preferred date. But we are open to other things.

Dr. Blasey declined an invitation to testify this coming Monday, but through her lawyer, she said she was open to testifying later under several conditions. She said she would be willing to speak with senators on the committee later next week as long as she is questioned by lawmakers — not outside counsel — and as long as Judge Kavanaugh is not in the hearing room while she speaks. She also asked for steps to be taken to ensure her safety — she has received death threats.

Video: Confirmation Battle Over Kavanaugh Comes With Echoes of the Past

But Democrats reacted negatively to the offer. California Sen. Dianne Feinstein, the top Democrat on the Senate Judiciary Committee, said Ford shouldnt be rushed. She said Ford cant testify any earlier than Thursday.

After the president tweeted about Dr. Blasey, he returned to criticizing Democrats for slowing the judges Supreme Court confirmation process, particularly for waiting so long to raise the issue of Dr. Blaseys accusation. Senator Dianne Feinstein of California, the top Democrat on the Judiciary Committee, learned of Dr. Blaseys allegations in July, but said she did not raise the issue sooner because she was respecting Dr. Blaseys wish to remain anonymous.

Show some heart, Feinstein said. Wait until Dr. Ford feels that she can come before the committee.

Ford has accused Kavanaugh of attempting to rape her while both were in high school. Kavanaugh has denied the allegations.

Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley had invited Ford to testify on Monday and gave Ford until 10 a.m. Friday to respond. That deadline passed Friday without a deal after Fords attorneys made clear this week Ford didnt want to testify Monday but suggested she would another day.

President Trump on Friday went on the offensive in the battle over Brett Kavanaughs Supreme Court confirmation after days of laying low, calling on accuser Christine Blasey Ford to provide a police report, slamming Democrats for waiting to share the allegations and telling senators to move ahead with a vote.

Ford attorney Debra Katz told the Judiciary Committee on Thursday that Ford is willing to appear for a hearing on Capitol Hill as long as senators provide "terms that are fair and which ensure her safety."

"I have no doubt that, if the attack on Dr. Ford was as bad as she says, charges would have been immediately filed with local Law Enforcement Authorities by either her or her loving parents. I ask that she bring those filings forward so that we can learn date, time, and place!" he tweeted. 

Among the terms requested by Fords legal team: Only members of the committee — no lawyers — can question her; Kavanaugh cannot be in the room at the time; and Kavanaugh should be questioned first, before he has the opportunity to hear Fords testimony.

Video: Kavanaugh accuser open to testifying next week

It was unclear whether Republicans who grant any of those demands — especially making Kavanaugh testify before hearing the allegations. 

“I think she doesnt want her story misrepresented, in the way that it was leaked,” Peters added, “but I think she also strongly believes that story needs to be heard by that American public, that they need to know what this man did in his youth so that he is held responsible.”

Meanwhile, President Trump on Friday called for Ford to testify, saying its time for the Senate to vote on Kavanaughs nomination.

The sister-in-law of Christine Blasey Ford, the college professor whos accused Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh of sexually assaulting her when they were teenagers, said on “Good Morning America” that “I dont see any possibility” that Ford is mistaken.

The president was also critical of Feinstein for receiving a letter from Ford outlining her allegations in July, but failing to disclose them, even anonymously, to federal officials or other committee members until last week.

“Some have gone so far as to state, ‘Shes mixed up’; ‘Shes mistaken’; ‘Shes not in really a position to make conditions’; and, ‘Ill listen to the lady, but were going to bring this to a close.’ These shameful attacks show why it is so difficult for survivors of sexual assault to come forward,” the Democrats wrote in their letter.

"Senator Feinstein and the Democrats held the letter for months, only to release it with a bang after the hearings were OVER – done very purposefully to Obstruct & Resist & Delay," Trump tweeted Friday. "Let her testify, or not, and TAKE THE VOTE!"

“We fear that rather than learning from the past, Senate Republicans and the Trump Administration are repeating this Committees previous mistakes and making new ones. Up to this point, the Committee majoritys treatment of Dr. Ford has unquestionably been worse than the disgraceful treatment that Anita Hill received 27 years ago,” the Democrats wrote.

Trump starts attacking credibility of Kavanaugh accuser

In a sharp change of tone after days of reserved statements regarding the allegations, the president unleashed a torrent of tweets, first in defense of Kavanaugh and then putting pressure on Ford to furnish a police report, though theres no indication one was ever filed.

"I have no doubt that, if the attack on Dr. Ford was as bad as she says, charges would have been immediately filed with local Law Enforcement Authorities by either her or her loving parents. I ask that she bring those filings forward so that we can learn date, time, and place!" he tweeted.

He also tweeted: Judge Brett Kavanaugh is a fine man, with an impeccable reputation, who is under assault by radical left wing politicians who dont want to know the answers, they just want to destroy and delay. Facts dont matter. I go through this with them every single day in D.C.

“So, moving beyond the Supreme Court, heres our challenge for the future: to do our jobs, wait out the obstruction, confirm more quality nominees to the judiciary,” he said. “Were going to keep on doing it. Were not going to get rattled by all this, and I dont want you to get rattled by it. Were not going to slow down. Were just going to keep going ahead. Even more nominees will be confirmed.”

Trump also took issue with Fords legal team saying they want the FBI to investigate the allegations – something the bureau has indicated it has no plans to do.

“Trump has nominated a stunningly successful individual. Youve watched the fight. Youve watched the tactics,” McConnell said. “But heres what I want to tell you: In the very near future, Judge Kavanaugh will be on the United States Supreme Court. So, my friends, keep the faith. Dont get rattled by all of this. Were going to plow right through it and do our job.”

"The radical left lawyers want the FBI to get involved NOW," Trump tweeted. "Why didnt someone call the FBI 36 years ago?"

Speaking to Fox News Sean Hannity on Thursday night before a political rally in Nevada, Trump called Kavanaugh "an outstanding person" and said, "I dont think you can delay it any longer."

For his part, Kavanaugh, in a letter to the Judiciary Committee on Thursday, indicated he would be ready and willing to testify on Monday. "I continue to want a hearing as soon as possible, so that I can clear my name," he wrote.

That’s not all. The Republican Party would have taken a significant hit less than two months before the mid-terms. The GOP would stand accused, not without reason, of refusing to give an alleged victim of sexual misconduct, albeit ancient alleged conduct, a chance to speak publicly. That won’t play with the electorate, and certainly not with the female portion thereof.

Video: Kavanaugh debate: If the White House calls, the FBI will investigate, ex-official says

"Since the moment I first heard this allegation, I have categorically and unequivocally denied it. I remain committed to defending my integrity."

Video: Kavanaugh debate: If the White House calls, the FBI will investigate, ex-official says

Kavanaughs letter did not contain any preconditions for his testimony. Fox News has learned that Kavanaugh, under oath, answered questions from the Judiciary Committee earlier this week, and denied the allegations.

Palo Alto moms link arms in front of Christine Fords home, chant Protect Christine

(CNN)President Donald Trump, in a series of tweets Friday, deviated from his previously measured comments about the woman who has accused his Supreme Court pick Brett Kavanaugh of sexual assault, claiming that if the attack she alleges “was as bad as she says, charges would have been immediately filed with local Law Enforcement Authorities”.


Posted in World