During his questioning by senators regarding the now three different women accusing him of sexual assault, SCOTUS nominee Brett Kavanaugh was emotional and combative. Whether or not he’s telling the truth, Kavanaugh has committed himself to a scorched-earth defense. When asked about the allegations against him, he’s immovable. According to him, he was nowhere near when the alleged events took place.
He seems confident, until someone mentions the FBI.
There were two notable instances when the subject of an FBI investigation came up during Kavanaugh’s questioning. One was when Dick Durbin (D-IL) asked Kavanaugh if he would be willing to suspend his confirmation while the FBI looked into the sexual assault allegations against him.
“I’ve got a suggestion for you,” Durbin said to Kavanaugh after reminding him what he’d said previously about welcoming “any kind of investigation.”
“Right now, turn to your left in the front row to Don McGhan, counsel to President Donald Trump,” Durbin continued, looking squarely at Kavanaugh. “Ask him to suspend this hearing and nomination process until the FBI completes its investigation of the charges mades by [Christine Blasey Ford] and others. …”
Chuck Grassley (R-IA) saw where Durbin was going and swooped in to try and save Kavanaugh.
“This committee is running this hearing!” Grassley shouted before later declaring that the hearing would not be suspended.
Durbin pressed the issue further, prompting more combativeness from Kavanaugh.
“I welcome whatever the committee wants to do because I’m telling the truth,” Kavanaugh responded.
“I want to know what you want to do,” Durbin shot back.
The two went back and forth, with Kavanaugh declaring his innocence of the charges all while avoiding answering the FBI question.
“If there is no truth to her charges, the FBI investigation will show that,” Durbin told the nominee. “Are you afraid that they might not?”
Kavanaugh continued to deflect.
Kamala Harris (D-CA) had trouble getting an answer as well. She pointed out to him that he’d been asked about an FBI investigation at least eight times during the day’s hearing, as well as other times on national TV. Each time, Kavanaugh dodged.
“So I’m going to ask you one last time,” she said. “Are you willing to ask the White House to authorize the FBI to investigate the claims that have been made against you?”
Kavanaugh tried to deflect again, but Harris cut him off and repeated the question — twice. Finally, she told him that she’d have to assume his answer is no.
Three women have now come out with allegations against Kavanaugh of sexual misconduct. As VICE News points out, only the president can order the FBI to conduct an investigation. The agency could also reopen a background check if new details are brought to light.
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