Delay vote to let Brett Kavanaugh’s accuser testify, Susan Collins says


The 10 a.m. eastern time deadline for Christine Blasey Ford, the woman accusing Judge Brett Kavanagh of sexual misconduct almost 40 years ago, to make a decision about whether she will testify at a scheduled Senate Judiciary Committee hearing Monday has passed.

Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley has scheduled a hearing for Monday morning, and he and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell have indicated Monday would be Ford's only chance to make her case.

Christine Blasey Ford's lawyer responded to Republican calls for Ford to testify to the Senate about her claims that Brett Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her decades ago. "A hearing on Monday is not possible and the committee's insistence that it occur then is arbitrary in any event".

President Donald Trump says Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh is "under assault by radical left wing politicians".

Ford has said she wants the FBI to investigate her claim that Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her at a high school party in the 1980s.

Ms Katz said of her client: "She's been receiving death threats which have been reported to the Federal Bureau of Investigation and she and her family have been forced out of their home".

Earlier Thursday, Senate Republicans had reiterated their resolve to press forward with a vote on Kavanaugh in the coming days if Ford chose not to testify before the 21-member Judiciary Committee.

White House adviser Kellyanne Conway, who has encouraged Ford to be heard, said on CNN on Friday that Ford's requests were a "laundry list of demands". But here's what I want to tell you: "in the very near future, Judge Kavanaugh will be on the United States Supreme Court", he said to a swell of applause. Despite Republican claims that investigations into these matters are the sole responsibility of the Senate, the FBI could open a more extensive investigation.

Conway says Ford and Kavanaugh should testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee next week.

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The confirmation fight comes just weeks before November 6 congressional elections in which Democrats are seeking to win control of Congress from the Republicans.

"I think it's not fair to Judge Kavanaugh for her not to come forward and testify", moderate Republican Senator Susan Collins, whose vote could be crucial, said in a radio interview.

Ford said that Kavanaugh and his male friend, who were reportedly drunk, laughed.

Ford's allegation has jeopardized Kavanaugh's nomination to a lifetime post on the Supreme Court, which previously was on track toward confirmation.

A petition backing Prof Ford, signed by more than 1,000 alumnae from Holton-Arms, her former Maryland high school, was delivered on Thursday to two Democratic women senators.

Christine Ford has been in the eye of a Washington maelstrom since identifying herself last Sunday, with Republicans demanding her Capitol Hill testimony and Democrats rallying to defend her. Professional investigators understand only too well the inherent unreliability of allegations raised in the manner Ford's have been raised.

According to the Washington Post, Ford, who had also contacted the newspaper in July, made a decision to go public after it became clear people were learning her identity. But that served to galvanize GOP lawmakers around Kavanaugh, who vehemently denies Ford's allegations, all but ensuring his likely confirmation.

Miranda later removed the post, explaining, cryptically, that the post "served its goal", and that she "was not ready" for the media attention the post garnered - even though NBC News and other outlets reported Miranda's claims as a major break in the Kavanaugh story.