The White House is advocating that a woman accusing Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh of sexual assault should “be heard.”
“This woman should not be insulted and she should not be ignored,” White House counselor Kellyanne Conway told Fox News on Monday.
Christine Blasey Ford, now a research psychologist in Northern California, has accused Kavanaugh of sexual assault at a summer party in the early 1980s at a house in Montgomery County, Maryland, according to The Washington Post.
In a statement Monday, Kavanaugh said: “This is a completely false allegation. I have never done anything like what the accuser describes—to her or to anyone.”
Ford reportedly wrote a confidential letter to Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., detailing the incident and revealed her identity to The Washington Post for an article published Sunday, ahead of Kavanaugh’s scheduled confirmation vote Thursday.
“I think the Senate is headed toward a reasonable approach, allowing this woman to be heard in sworn testimony, allowing Judge Kavanaugh to be heard in sworn testimony,” Conway said. “I spoke with the president, I spoke with Sen. [Lindsey] Graham and others. This woman will be heard.”
Hundreds of women have come forward to speak about Judge Kavanaugh’s character and integrity: those who knew him in high school, college, law school, the Bush White House, his law clerks, moms of girls he coaches in youth basketball. This matters. https://t.co/n2tat8Xhns
— Kellyanne Conway (@KellyannePolls) September 17, 2018
“Judge Kavanaugh is a man of character and integrity, who has been through six FBI vettings. … He also has been lauded by women from every different aspect of his life,” Conway added, referring to a letter signed by 65 women who knew Kavanaugh in high school.
That letter, released last week, states: “Throughout the more than 35 years we have known him, Brett has stood out for his friendship, character, and integrity. In particular, he has always treated women with decency and respect. That was true when he was in high school, and it has remained true to this day.”
Ford is willing to testify publicly, according to her lawyer, Debra Katz.
“She clearly considers this an attempted rape,” Katz said on NBC’s “Today” show Monday. “She believes that if it were not for the severe intoxication of Brett Kavanaugh, she would’ve been raped.”
Mark Judge, a classmate of Kavanaugh who was reportedly with him the night of the alleged incident, denied it in an interview with The Weekly Standard published Friday.
“It’s just absolutely nuts,” Judge told The Weekly Standard. “I never saw Brett act that way.”
Senate Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, said the timing of the publication of Kavanaigh’s alleged sexual misconduct is “disturbing,” given the numerous times the FBI reviewed Kavanaugh’s record.
“It’s disturbing that these uncorroborated allegations from more than 35 years ago, during high school, would surface on the eve of a committee vote after Democrats sat on them since July,” Grassley said, adding:
Judge Kavanaugh’s background has been thoroughly vetted by the FBI on six different occasions throughout his decades of public service, and no such allegation ever surfaced. Furthermore, Judge Kavanaugh and others alleged to have been involved have unequivocally denied these claims from their high school days.
The committee has received letter after letter from those who’ve known Judge Kavanaugh personally and professionally, including 65 women who’ve known him since high school, speaking to his impeccable character and respect for others, especially women.
Conway said, however, that she is not surprised that a late allegation surfaced.
“Let’s not fool ourselves—long before this happened there were Democrats saying they would not vote for Judge Kavanaugh or anyone President Trump nominated for the Supreme Court,” Conway said. “Let’s make very clear that these Democratic senators … were not interested in Judge Kavanaugh’s significant record, his character and integrity, as testified to by many women.”