February 19, 2019

Trump shaken by Ford, but backs Kavanaugh after hearing

28 September 2018, 06:00 | Randall Craig

Dr. Ford's testimony was widely perceived credible and

Dr. Ford's testimony was widely perceived credible and powerful

Flake said Kavanaugh was entitled to the "presumption of innocence ... absent corroborating evidence". Look at me and tell me that it doesn't matter what happened to me.

In a lengthy and emotional confirmation hearing yesterday that was called after Ford's allegations became public, Ford recalled chilling details of the alleged assault saying that she "will never forget the laughter" from Kavnauagh and his friend Mark Judge as the assault took place.

California professor Christine Blasey Ford, the first of his accusers, gave testimony on Thursday in a hearing that gripped the nation - both for her powerful description of abuse but also for Kavanaugh's angry denial of wrongdoing.

He strongly denied Ford's allegation, but said he believed she had been the victim of a sexual assault. She accused him of sexually assaulting her in high school.

The 11 Republicans and 10 Democrats on the committee will decide whether to recommend Kavanaugh for approval by the entire Senate, which is expected to begin procedural votes Saturday.

Despite the bitter partisan battle that played out Thursday, Conway insisted that Kavanaugh will be able to maintain impartiality as a Supreme Court justice should he be confirmed.

As the committee prepared for a Friday vote, its result remained uncertain.

"She was certainly a compelling person", Flake told reporters when asked what his "gut instinct" was after hearing from Ford and Kavanaugh. Why won't they hear from his college girlfriend, who volunteered her testimony?

The Republican is among a handful of undecided senators on Kavanaugh. But Ford's account lacked firm corroboration of her claims by others at the party. Richard Blumenthal of CT made a similar comment, saying that "someone who is honest is also candid about what he or she can not remember".

Trump's tweet did not mention Ford.

In calling for the Federal Bureau of Investigation probe before any vote could happen, Carlson urged the Senate to "remain an institution that will reliably follow the law and not politics".

The Hawaii senator also sent a fundraising email while the hearing was in session, prompting criticism that she was trying to use Ford's testimony to help her re-election campaign. While we previously endorsed the nomination of Judge Kavanaugh on the basis of his legal credentials and his reputation as a committed textualist, it is now clear that the nomination should be withdrawn. Graham specifically cited the ABA, which he called the "gold standard", in making the case that Kavanaugh "lived a good life" and that "his integrity is absolutely unquestioned".

"If Senate Republicans proceed with his nomination, they will be prioritizing policy aims over a woman's report of an assault", the editors wrote. Georgetown Prep, Kavanaugh's high school, is a Jesuit institution. A White House official who was not authorized to speak publicly said the West Wing saw the judge's opening statement as "game changing" and said Trump appeared to be reacting positively.

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