Calls grow to delay Kavanaugh vote amid sex assault allegations

Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh at his Senate Judiciary Committee confirmation hearing in Washington on Sept. 6 2018. MUST CREDIT Bloomberg

Sens. Murkowski and Susan Collins of ME are said to be the two key GOP swing votes. Sen. Feinstein aides would not say whether she had conferred with Ford or her attorney before sending the letter to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and neither would Feinstein, who said Monday that she could not recall when the letter had been sent to the authorities and "would have to check the records".

The allegation now threatens to inject a potentially heated "he said-she said" battle into the looming midterm congressional elections, with Republican control of the House of Representatives and the Senate at stake.

On Sunday, Ford, a research psychologist at Palo Alto University in Northern California, went public with allegations that Kavanaugh had tried to rape her while at a high school party. She described a sexual assault encounter in detail, alleging that an intoxicated Kavanaugh groped her over her clothes and attempted to pull off her swim suit.

"I find her allegations worth looking into professionally", Leahy said in the interview. I can tell you, the Republican senators want to be 100 percent happy themselves.

Kavanaugh has flatly denied the allegation, saying he did not do this "at any time". "I never saw Brett act that way".

"Because this never happened, I had no idea who was making this accusation until she identified herself yesterday". The way they mishandled those allegations sparked a political backlash.

Citing unreleased records from Kavanaugh's official work over the years, Democrats have called for a delay in considering his nomination.

The White House tone for the day was set by one of the administration's few high-ranking female voices, Kellyanne Conway, who said Ford's voice should be heard.

Republican leadership on the Judiciary Committee have questioned the timing of the revelation of Ford's letter and her allegation, coming just as the committee was preparing to vote on the nomination on Thursday.

Moments later, Welch issued his statement.

"I don't know enough about Dr Ford and her allegations yet" to reach a conclusion, Collins said. "I don't remember any of that stuff going on with girls".

"Despite the length of time since the alleged incident, Dr. Ford's allegations should be heard and she must have an opportunity to present her story before the committee under oath, with Judge Kavanaugh having the opportunity to respond under oath as well", Murkowski said in a statement Monday. During all that time, "they did not raise it", he said in a Senate floor speech.

Asked whether he agreed with Sen.

Take your pick of metaphors: either way, clearly Washington leaders agree that Kavanaugh's march towards a lifetime judicial appointment, which had been relatively smooth, is now in serious danger of getting beat up and potentially burned. Two weeks? Three weeks?

Thomas won confirmation by a vote of 52 to 48, with 11 Democrats supporting him in a Senate they controlled. "Let the investigation get done".

In a letter sent later, all 10 Democrats on the Judiciary Committee urged Grassley to postpone Thursday's scheduled vote. As one of only two GOP women in the Senate and a key undecided vote on Kavanaugh's nomination, Collins views may carry outsized weight with Grassley. She told the Post that she was able to escape after a friend of Kavanaugh's who was in the room jumped on top of them and everyone tumbled.

Days later, at a surprise news conference ahead of a presidential debate in St. Louis, Trump showed a willingness to support allegations against others, appearing with four women who accused former President Bill Clinton, the husband of Trump's opponent, of sexual misconduct.

"I think he's on track, yeah". "They can't say this is the last minute when they jammed this thing through and asked for a vote long before all the information is in".