Republicans Should Stand By Brett Kavanaugh Until More Evidence Is Produced

A panel vote is scheduled for Thursday

A panel vote is scheduled for Thursday

Already, White House officials signaled they would not seek to smear Kavanaugh's accuser, California professor Christine Blasey Ford.

Kavanaugh denied the allegations outright.

The Post said it viewed notes from that session and an individual therapy session the following year. But Judge's 1997 memoir, "Wasted", references a "Bart O'Kavanaugh" character who passes out drunk and throws up in a vehicle.

Even before sexual assault allegations surfaced against U.S. Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh over the weekend, Minnesotans were closely split on whether he should be confirmed to the nation's highest court.

The official said the White House wants to avoid a public hearing on the allegations - a risky drama that could build sympathy for the accuser - but is willing to accept a confidential inquiry. And Kavanaugh, too, is denying everything. Days earlier Kavanaugh had seemed on track for quick approval. Her allegation has now put in doubt the timing of a vote on Kavanaugh's confirmation, and perhaps the nomination itself. She says in her statement, "Brett Kavanaugh and I have been good friends since high school". She says that Kavanaugh covered her mouth when she attempted to cry out. Both schools are in Washington's Maryland suburbs. In April 2017, she attended a March For Science in San Francisco, which was held to protest Trump administration cuts to research, and signed a letter in June 2018 condemning the Trump administration's policy, since abandoned, of separating immigrant children from their parents at the border.

If the Judiciary committee's timetable slips further, it would become increasingly hard for Republicans to schedule a vote before the November 6 elections, in which congressional control will be at stake.

Democrats say Sen. Chuck Grassley, the committee chairman, is rushing the confirmation process and are calling on the FBI to reopen Kavanaugh's background investigation.

Although the White House appeared to stand behind Kavanaugh, senior adviser Kellyanne Conway said on Monday that sworn testimony from both Kavanaugh and Ford on the specific allegation should be considered as part of the record in the judge's hearings. He did not mention whether they had tried to contact Ford by phone. They both said that they certainly drank beer while in high school - Maura Kane stressed that drinking was legal for 18 year olds at that time. But she also needs to be cross-examined and have her story and character probed as Kavanaugh's has been by FBI investigators as an attorney for the Ken Starr impeachment investigation of Bill Clinton, a White House aide to George Bush, a US appellate judge, and a Supreme Court nominee.

And much more. If Kavanaugh is voted down or forced to withdraw, the Republican Party and conservative movement could lose their last best hope for recapturing the high court for constitutionalism.

Her attorney, Debra Katz, told Inside Edition that her client's claims may have bearing on his confirmation to the Supreme Court. Even if Democrats peel off the one Republican vote to not recommend Kavanaugh to the full Senate, Republicans have another option.

McConnell accused Democrats of "blatant malpractice" by waiting weeks to disclose the letter Christine Blasey Ford had sent lawmakers describing the alleged incident.

To be clear, it is quite possible that if/when Ford testifies (which I predict will be bad for Republicans regardless of what the truth here is) that we will learn that none of these concerns are valid.

Maine Sen. Susan Collins, one of the key swing votes on the nomination, said she wanted both Kavanaugh and Ford to testify under oath before the Judiciary Committee.

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