Alleged Kavanaugh Misconduct Witness Mark Judge Submits Letter to Congress Disputing Claims

Alex Brandon  AP

The letter, signed by 65 women who say they knew Kavanaugh in high school. insists that the judge "has behaved honorably and treated women with respect".

Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, said on radio's "Hugh Hewitt Show" said that he'd not yet received confirmation from Ford that she would appear at the hearing, despite several attempts to reach her camp. Flake said he told No. 2 Senate Republican leader John Cornyn of Texas on Sunday that "if we didn't give her a chance to be heard, then I would vote no". So do they want to have the hearing or not?

Democrats have called for a full FBI investigation of the allegations, however, saying the Monday hearing will be too soon.

Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham, a member of the committee, said he would welcome hearing from Ford.

Grassley said the hearing would be televised and would include just two witnesses, Ford and Kavanaugh. By the time he testified in a second round of hearings, following Hill, he said, "From my standpoint, as a black American, as far as I'm concerned, it is a high-tech lynching for uppity blacks who in any way deign to think for themselves, to do for themselves, to have different ideas".

Judiciary Committee staffers conducted a phone interview with Judge Kavanaugh Monday, which they said was normal procedure when information like this comes in so late in the process. After initially guarding her anonymity, Ford "decided to take control of this and tell this in her own voice" after the allegations were leaked, her lawyer said.

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Conway, one of the highest-ranking women in the West Wing, said she'd "spoken at length" with Trump about the allegations.

Mr Grassley had earlier stopped short of calling for a public hearing, or for delaying the committee's vote on Mr Kavanaugh which was originally planned for Thursday of this week.

Inside the White House, plans are not now being made in case Kavanaugh's confirmation unravels, including identifying a potential replacement nominee, according to a source familiar with the nomination process who spoke on condition of anonymity.

Meanwhile, Democratic and Republican senators sparred Tuesday over who could, should or would testify at a special followup hearing on Monday with Kavanaugh and his accuser, Christine Blasey Ford, that has been scheduled in light of the sexual misconduct allegations.

But there is little that is contemplative about the debate over Judge Kavanaugh's high-court nomination, and there is much that is instructive about the intrusion of contemporary politics into the confirmation process - a stark symbol of the way politics often intrudes into the meditative study of constitutional imperatives and legal precedents inside the Supreme Court.

On Monday there were no plans for the White House to withdraw Kavanaugh's nomination.

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Bob Corker also believes Kavanaugh's accuser should be heard out before the Judiciary Committee votes on his nomination, the Tennessee senator's spokesperson, Micah Johnson, said in a statement to CNN.

Lawmakers have not made any request for Ford to testify publicly before the Judiciary Committee.

Ford went public after Feinstein released a statement to the media last week saying she had forwarded information about Kavanaugh to the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

If the Judiciary committee's timetable slips, it would become increasingly hard for Republicans to schedule a vote before midterm elections on November 6 elections, when congressional control will be at stake. They came forward in the wake of a 2005 "Access Hollywood" tape that was released in October 2016 in which he is caught saying on a hot mic: "And when you're a star, they let you do it".

Meanwhile, the Judicial Crisis Network, an organization that promotes conservative judicial nominees, announced on Monday a $1.5m ad campaign featuring a longtime friend of Kavanaugh's who says the nominee is of the "highest character".

In a statement to local media, the Department of Justice said the "FBI does not make any judgement about the credibility or significance of any allegation".

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