With newfound aggressiveness, GOP ramps up Kavanaugh fight

Brenda Watkins
September 25, 2018

Republicans have accused Democrats of a smear campaign by using the women's accusations of misconduct by Kavanaugh in high school and college to try to derail his nomination to the Supreme Court.

Ford, a university professor who accused Kavanaugh, President Donald Trump's Supreme Court nominee, of sexual assault will testify before a Senate panel on Thursday about her allegation, her lawyers and the committee said on Sunday.

This follows an allegation from Christine Blasey Ford, who says Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her at a party in 1982, when the two were teenagers. Kavanaugh said all of the witnesses identified by Ford as being present at the party she describes are on the record to the Committee saying they have no recollection of any such party happening.

"I mean, I've said all along and Ashley, too, I want to be heard", Kavanaugh replied, cutting off his wife as she was about to speak. "I don't like to see anything that reflects negatively on him", MacCallum said in 2016.

Others argued that the interview was orchestrated to appeal to conservatives - given that Fox is the go-to network for the president and his followers - and is not an attempt to fix Kavanaugh's reputation among the broader population, with whom he is deeply unpopular.

A second woman has come forward, alleging the US Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her.

This comes as Kavanaugh is set to testify once again before lawmakers on Thursday on the allegations against him.

Protesters opposed to Kavanaugh's confirmation held a series of rallies in Washington, New York, Philadelphia and elsewhere.

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Many chanted "I believe Christine Ford", as they called on the Senate leadership to take the allegations made by Ford and Ramirez seriously.

"I had never sexually assaulted anyone, not in high school, not ever", Kavanaugh said in an interview with Fox News.

"I'm not going to let false accusations drive me out of this process". "I knew that's not what I wanted, even in that state of mind". Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, in which she asked for "fair and respectful treatment" and said she had "one motivation in coming forward - to tell the truth about what Mr. Kavanaugh and his friend Mark Judge did to me". Ford and Ramirez, he wrote, are participating in a "coordinated effort to destroy [his] good name". Kavanaugh vehemently denied the charge.

Mr Kavanaugh called the allegations "grotesque and obvious character assassination" and added that they could dissuade others from entering public service.

Kavanaugh's interview aired on Monday, a day after a former Yale University classmate claimed he sexually assaulted her at a party 35 years ago.

Proceeding with Kavanaugh seems to give Republicans their best shot at filling the Supreme Court vacancy - and giving the court an increasingly conservative tilt - before November's elections, when GOP Senate control is in play.

The interview saw Kavanaugh continue a tone he struck in a letter Monday to Senate Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley and ranking minority member Dianne Feinstein. There are now 51 Republicans in the Senate, so just two of them breaking from the ranks would dash his confirmation hopes.

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