- President Donald Trump on Monday said he stood with his Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh “all the way” as the judge faced a barrage of sexual-assault allegations.
- Trump called Kavanaugh “outstanding” and said the allegations against him were “totally political.”
- At least three women are accusing Kavanaugh of sexual assaulting them when he was in high school or college.
- Kavanaugh vehemently denies the allegations and is scheduled to testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Thursday.
President Donald Trump on Monday said he was still with his Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh “all the way” as the judge faced a barrage of sexual-misconduct allegations.
Speaking with reporters at the United Nations in New York, Trump called Kavanaugh “outstanding” and said the allegations against him were “totally political,” the Associated Press reported.
The president’s comments come less than a day after Kavanaugh’s nomination for the Supreme Court was further imperiled by new accusations of assault.
The allegations against Kavanaugh
The New Yorker on Sunday published an article featuring allegations from a classmate of Kavanaugh’s at Yale who said he shoved his penis in her face and forced her to come into contact with it at a party in college. The woman, Deborah Ramirez, is calling on the FBI to investigate the incident.
Also Sunday, Stormy Daniels’ attorney claimed to have evidence of further sexual misconduct from Kavanaugh’s high-school years.
In an email to the chief counsel for nominations for the Senate Judiciary Committee, the attorney, Michael Avenatti, said he had evidence that Kavanaugh, his friend Mark Judge, and others would target women at house parties in the early 1980s using alcohol and drugs “in order to allow a ‘train’ of men to subsequently gang rape them.”
Avenatti demanded to present testimony to the Senate Judiciary Committee and called for Kavanaugh’s nomination to be withdrawn.
My e-mail of moments ago with Mike Davis, Chief Counsel for Nominations for U.S. Senate Committee on the Judiciary. We demand that this process be thorough, open and fair, which is what the American public deserves. It must not be rushed and evidence/witnesses must not be hidden. pic.twitter.com/11XLZJBTtY
— Michael Avenatti (@MichaelAvenatti) September 24, 2018
The Senate Judiciary Committee’s chairman, Chuck Grassley, said in a statement on Sunday that the committee would “attempt to evaluate” the new accusations.
Correspondingly, Senate Democrats are calling for proceedings to halt and want the FBI to investigate.
Before Sunday, Christine Blasey Ford, a California professor, had accused Kavanaugh of sexually assaulting her at a high-school party when they were teenagers. Ford accused Kavanaugh of forcing himself on her and covering her mouth so people wouldn’t hear her scream. Kavanaugh categorically denied her account.
On Monday morning, the Montgomery County Sentinel reported that investigators were looking at a possibly fourth woman’s allegation of sexual misconduct from Kavanaugh’s senior year in high school. But later in the day, law enforcement in Montgomery County, Maryland, said they’re not currently looking into sexual assault allegations against Kavanaugh, seemingly contradicting the Sentinel’s report.
JUST IN: Montgomery Co. Police say they have NOT received a request for to file a police report or a criminal investigation regarding Kavanaugh pic.twitter.com/sIu88RW36D
— Dorey Scheimer (@DoreyScheimer) September 24, 2018
What Kavanaugh has said
Kavanaugh has vehemently denied the allegations and plans to defend himself before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Thursday. Ford is also set to testify to the committee.
In response to Ramirez’s allegation, Kavanaugh said in a statement Sunday night:
“This alleged event from 35 years ago did not happen. The people who knew me then know that this did not happen, and have said so. This is a smear, plain and simple. I look forward to testifying on Thursday about the truth, and defending my good name – and the reputation for character and integrity I have spent a lifetime building – against these last-minute allegations.”
What the White House has said
The White House sent an email just before midnight on Sunday echoing Kavanaugh’s denial and politicizing Ramirez’s accusation.
The email attempts to discredit Ramirez’s accusation with a selective breakdown of the New Yorker article, such as the fact she acknowledged “significant gaps” in her memories about the event.
“It took six days of ‘assessing her memories’ for Ramirez to say she recalled Kavanaugh committing the alleged incident, and that came only after consulting with an attorney provided by the Democrats,” the White House said.
The White House spokeswoman Kerri Kupec also released a statement in response to Ramirez’s accusation Sunday night saying the White House stood behind Kavanaugh:
“This 35-year-old, uncorroborated claim is the latest in a coordinated smear campaign by the Democrats designed to tear down a good man. This claim is denied by all who were said to be present and is wholly inconsistent with what many women and men who knew Judge Kavanaugh at the time in college say. The White House stands firmly behind Judge Kavanaugh.”
Appearing on “CBS This Morning” on Monday, the White House counselor, Kellyanne Conway, said the second allegation against Kavanaugh sounded like a “vast left-wing conspiracy.”
“I know there’s pent-up demand for women to get their day, women who have been sexually harassed and sexually assaulted – and I personally am very aggrieved for all of them – but we cannot put decades of pent-up demand for women to feel whole on one man’s shoulders,” Conway said. “What exactly is the standard for ruining one man’s life based on decades of allegations that have nothing to do with him?”