Brett Kavanaugh accuser to give evidence before Senate

Arturo Kim
September 24, 2018

"I have no knowledge of the party in question; nor do I have any knowledge of the allegations of improper conduct she has leveled against Brett Kavanaugh", his lawyer wrote in a letter, which also included a ringing endorsement of Kavanaugh's nomination.

The lawyers said they made "important progress" in a Sunday morning call with Judiciary Committee staff members and agreed to the hearing even though the committee refused to subpoena Mark Judge, who Ford said witnessed the attack, as well as others she said were present.

Ford will testify on Wednesday or Thursday, according to U.S. media reports.

"Unless there's something more, no I'm not going to ruin Judge Kavanaugh's life over this", Graham said.

The aggressive stance reflected his fear that time is running out to get his hand-picked conservative judge confirmed - thereby tilting the Supreme Court firmly to the right for years to come - before November elections when Republicans risk losing control of Congress.

Earlier in the night, Grassley said on Twitter that he had granted an extension to Ford after a 10 pm (0200 GMT Saturday) deadline he set to reach a deal with Ford's lawyers had passed. It says she will "provide her firsthand knowledge" but it doesn't say how.

Ford's accusations of Kavanaugh's behavior 35 years ago and the standoff over the terms of her appearance have captivated the nation as the appeals court judge's confirmation hangs in balance. Republicans made a counteroffer on Friday of holding the hearing on Wednesday, and having Ford testify before Kavanaugh. Before the 2016 presidential election, more than a dozen women accused Trump of making unwanted advances.

In their statement, Ford's attorneys said that lawmakers had "refused to invite other witnesses who are essential for a fair hearing that arrives at the truth about the sexual assault".

In requesting another day to decide, Katz called Grassley's original deadline "arbitrary" and said its "sole objective is to bully Dr. Ford and deprive her of the ability to make a considered decision that has life-altering implications for her and her family".

Susan Collins - a Republican who sits on the Judiciary Committee - said she was "appalled" by Trump's tweet, pointing out that incidents of sexual assault were known to be chronically under-reported.

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Meanwhile, Republicans viewed Ms Ford's requests as a way to delay voting on President Donald Trump's nominee.

Earlier Friday, Grassley rejected concessions Ford wanted if she is tell her story publicly before the committee.

Republicans said they would accommodate several of Ford's requests, including ensuring that she had adequate security at the Capitol and that Kavanaugh would not be in the room when she speaks.

Her lawyers and committee staff were negotiating the conditions of her testimony.

"I will listen if she does". In other words, there's no real agreement yet since we've heard this story before.

After Grassley set a hearing for Monday, Democrats demanded a delay to allow time for the FBI to investigate Ford's claim.

It was not immediately clear whether the Republican-run Senate Judiciary Committee would agree to more talks with Ford's team.

Kavanaugh's confirmation appears to turn mostly on the support or opposition of three Republican senators: Jeff Flake of Arizona, who is on the Judiciary panel that Republicans control 11-10; Susan Collins of ME and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska.

A Senate Republican aide told CNN Friday that a special counsel would prevent the politicization of Ford's questioning.

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