Kavanaugh says he won't let 'false accusations' push him out

Adjust Comment Print

"Female interviewer, check. Fox News, check". He described Kavanaugh as a "great scholar" and a "fine man". "Innocent until proven guilty is how we do this in America".

"This is a smear, plain and simple", Kavanaugh said.

He's also accused of sexually assaulting high school classmate Christine Blasey Ford at a party in 1982.

In a story published Sunday evening by The New Yorker, Deborah Ramirez says Kavanaugh exposed himself to her during a drunken party while both were first year students at Yale University. Kavanaugh denies the allegation.

Sen. Dianne Feinstein of California, the ranking Democrat on the committee, called late Sunday for a delay in further consideration of it until the allegations of sexual misconduct can be thoroughly investigated. She says both she and Kavanaugh were intoxicated at the time and that she wasn't entirely sure of her memories. "There's a hearing on Thursday", she said.

"I will answer any questions you have", Ford said in the letter.

Kavanaugh is set to testify Thursday at a hearing with Christine Blasey Ford, who accuses him of sexual assault.

The Associated Press tried reaching Ramirez at her home in Boulder, Colorado. A White House spokeswoman added in a second statement that the allegation was "designed to tear down a good man".

"The people who knew me then know this did not happen, and have said so", the conservative judge said in a statement.

In the letter, Ford explains her motive for coming forward, and the timing of her allegations - which, being just ahead of the Senate vote on Kavanaugh, Republicans including Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell have called into question. "But I think she's sincerely wrong". Avenatti, who has said he's considering running for president as a Democrat, said his client isn't Ramirez. "This is a very dynamic situation".

"We can say with confidence that if the incident Debbie alleges ever occurred, we would have seen or heard about it - and we did not". He declined to provide more details.

Trump, speaking in NY where he was attending the United Nations annual assembly, threw his full weight behind Kavanaugh whose once straightforward progress to the nation's highest court has been hit by two bombshell accusations of sexual misconduct from his school and university days. "In my opinion, it's totally political".

Iowa GOP Sen. Chuck Grassley, the committee chairman, made the announcement official in a statement later Sunday, saying the panel would hear testimony from Ford followed by Kavanaugh on Thursday.

"I felt agony yet urgency and a civic duty to let it be known, in a confidential manner, prior to the nominee being selected", Ford wrote.

Presidential adviser Kellyanne Conway told CBS that the accusations against Mr Kavanaugh sound like "a vast left-wing conspiracy", using rhetoric that echoed Hillary Clinton's 1998 description of allegations that her husband, President Bill Clinton, had had affairs. CNN reported on the outreach to Keyser and her lawyer's response on Saturday.

The controversy over Kavanaugh is unfolding just weeks before November 6 congressional elections in which Democrats are trying to take control of Congress from Trump's fellow Republicans, against a backdrop of the #MeToo movement fighting sexual harassment and assault.

Despite the New Yorker also raising concerns about Ramirez's claims - the magazine reported that she "was reluctant to characterize Kavanaugh's role in the alleged incident with certainty" - one of the piece's writers, Ronan Farrow, told ABC on Monday that there are "several people in this story who back Ms. Ramirez".

He also denies exposing himself to Ms Ramirez during a party - amid claims he thrust his genitals in her face and caused her to touch them without her consent when she pushed him away. The individuals present who denied that this happened are individuals who Deborah Ramirez said were involved in the alleged misconduct, who egged on Kavanaugh, who taunted her. There will be breaks at 45-minute intervals upon request, and Ford will have dedicated security as well as two lawyers at the table with her, the source said.