Dems call for delay of Kavanaugh vote after accuser comes forward


The woman who accused U.S. Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh of sexual misconduct in high school has come forward publicly in an interview with the Washington Post after sending a private letter containing the allegations to a Democratic senator.

Senate Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley of Iowa is working to set up bipartisan staff conversations with Kavanaugh and Ford before Thursday's committee vote on the nomination, Grassley spokesman Taylor Foy said in an e-mail Sunday evening.

"I thought he might inadvertently kill me", Ms Ford said. "He was trying to attack me and remove my clothing".

On Sunday, the Post identified Kavanaugh's accuser as Christine Blasey Ford, 51, a research psychologist in northern California.

Senate Republicans intend to go forward with Brett Kavanaugh's nomination anyway, despite calls for a postponement in light of the allegations.

"Judge Kavanaugh's credibility has already been seriously questioned because of his answers regarding Manny Miranda, Judge Pryor, and other issues during his time in the Bush White House, and now his credibility is even more suspect", Schumer said.

Republican Senator Lindsey Graham of SC, also a Judiciary Committee member, said that if Ford wants to provide information to the committee, "I would gladly listen to what she has to say". Kavanaugh's and Judge's denials have left them no credible wiggle room. The name Kavanaugh surfaces in passing, when Judge recites some Irish Catholic surnames at his elementary school - "O'Neal, Murphy, Kavanaugh". She says that Kavanaugh and a friend forced her into a secluded bedroom during a party in the early 1980s. Mr Judge denied that the incident happened.

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Brett Kavanaugh accuser speaks out about sexual assault allegations
No one was told of the incident until 2012, when Ford and her husband went to couples therapy. She told The Post there were four boys at the party but only two in the room.

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Republicans have not settled on the strategy, the person familiar with the situation said, but were weighing options, including doing nothing.

"Katz said Ford originally had "a great deal of ambivalence" about coming forward and had chose to keep her allegations confidential, but "that decision was essentially taken away from her as those allegations were leaked" and members of the press began approaching her. Katz said Ford stood by her story, and that now she had come forward, they expected serious opposition".

Ford's lawyer, Debra Katz, appeared on NBC's "Today" show on Monday to say her client would be willing to testify publicly before the Senate Judiciary Committee, which has planned a Thursday vote on Kavanaugh's confirmation. The notes say four boys were involved, a discrepancy Ford says was an error on the therapist's part. Ford kept silent about the attempted assault until 2012, when she revealed the story to a therapist during couples counseling with her husband.

Ford sent a letter to her Congressional representative, Rep. Anna Eshoo (D-CA), and contacted a tip line at The Washington Post this summer.

On Thursday, Feinstein said she had received "information" regarding Kavanaugh and has passed it on to the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Ford said she managed to escape when Judge jumped on top of both of them. He called Roe an "important precedent" during his Senate Judiciary confirmation hearing but refused to say whether the ruling was correct.

Flake, who serves on the Judiciary committee, told the Post that he has made it clear he is not comfortable with voting on Kavanaugh's nomination later this week "if we have not heard her side of the story or explored this further".

"No one in their right mind regardless of their motives would want to inject themselves into this process and face the kind of violation that she will be subjected to by those who want this nominee to go though".