Senate Panel Sets Deadline for Kavanaugh's Accuser to Respond


The president previously had avoided naming Ford or plainly casting doubt on her account.

Kavanaugh was headed toward confirmation to the Supreme Court until Ford identified herself to The Washington Post, alleging that he steered her into a bedroom and tried to undress her when both were teenagers in suburban Maryland in the 1980s.

Kavanaugh denies knowledge of any such assault and no further direct witnesses have come forward.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell expressed confidence on Thursday that Kavanaugh will ultimately be confirmed. But he also called for Ford's voice to be heard: "With all of that, I feel that the Republicans-and I can speak for myself-we should go through a process, because there shouldn't be even a little doubt".

Rios also suggested, incorrectly, that Ford worked for the liberal billionaire George Soros - a claim echoed by several other attendees.

There's plenty to unpack from Trump's comments.

No, sir. Women have lots of reasons to keep an assault to themselves.

Trump's tweet could affect GOP support among women going into the midterm elections.

The other women who spoke at the event described Kavanaugh as a family man who coaches a girls' basketball team, tutors children, goes to neighborhood barbeques and attends church. Trump, a confessed sexual abuser, tweeted that if Professor Christine Blasey Ford's alleged assault was "that bad", then she should have come forward when it allegedly occurred.

The Senate Judiciary committee has given Ford's attorneys a 10 p.m. deadline on Friday to respond to their offer to testify next Wednesday about the incident, according to a Republican source familiar with the discussions.

Why did you make that decision?

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Susan Collins of ME and Jeff Flake of Arizona - said that unless Ford testified Monday they would move on to Kavanagh's vote.

Washington Free Beacon editor-in-chief Matthew Continetti on Thursday said that it has been "apparent" since day one of Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh's hearings that Democrats wanted to delay the vote to confirm him until after the elections in November.

"It's tricky, perilous business", said Democratic strategist Jim Manley, a former Senate aide who handled Senate Judiciary confirmations.

In addition to security, expected to be provided by Capitol Police, Ford has asked for press coverage of her testimony to be the same as for Kavanaugh.

Reporters had assigned seating and were kept separated from the nominee, who was whisked to and from the room.

Ford and Senate Democrats had demanded the FBI first reopen Kavanaugh's background investigation to include her claims.

Notably, Ford's attorneys seemed open to the idea of a public hearing, after the committee offered her the opportunity to testify in private. That word from her attorney could breathe new life into the prospect of a dramatic Senate showdown next week over Ford's accusation that he assaulted her when both were in high school.

Kavanaugh, meanwhile, has said he is ready to appear on Monday (Tuesday NZT). 'I continue to want a hearing as soon as possible, so that I can clear my name'. Kavanaugh accepted, and has spent most of the week at the White House preparing.

Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo tweeted in reply to Trump that sexual assault and domestic violence are two "of the most under-reported crimes in society, this is a fact & in the past the law enforcement community has not done a good job of creating safe spaces for victims".

"I think if Senator Feinstein had raised this with Senator Grassley in July, the likely next step would have been asking the Federal Bureau of Investigation to go out and investigate" Ford's story, Nunziata says. Sen.