Chuck Grassley’s Handling of the Ford Hearing Is an Ongoing Disaster

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28 September, 2018

As the Senate Judiciary Committee hears testimony from Christine Blasey Ford and Brett Kavanaugh about allegations of sexual assault, AP journalists around the country are talking to Americans about politics, gender, culture and the Supreme Court.

"Judge Kavanaugh is being considered for a promotion".

She told the Senate Judiciary Committee that during the alleged incident at a gathering of teenagers when she and Mr Kavanaugh were high school students in Maryland that she thought Mr Kavanaugh was going to rape her and perhaps accidentally kill her.

Republic strategist Jennifer Jacobs, watching the hearing from her home in San Diego, said she found herself struck by what she deemed Ford's sincerity. Earlier this month, he told Judiciary Committee staffers he didn't recall ever meeting Ford.

President Donald Trump, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and other Republicans have cast Ford's allegation as part of a Democratic smear campaign meant to thwart Kavanaugh's confirmation. She alleges that when she went upstairs to use the bathroom, Kavanaugh forced her down on a bed, where he tried to remove her clothes while holding his hand over her mouth to stop her from screaming. "I'm still on the fence about, do I believe that this was absolutely this person". "This confirmation process has become a national disgrace", he shouted into the microphone, as you can see in the above PBS NewsHour clip.

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She added: "I was just focused on what I was going to say and my fear about that". After being repeatedly asked about the circumstances of the polygraph test - when she took it, where she took it, who had recommended the tester - Ford's lawyers interjected to say that they had paid for the test, "as is routine". Her father plays golf with Brett Kavanaugh's dad at Burning Tree.

He has denied the allegations by Ford and two other women who have also made accusations against him since the nomination was announced. And Democrats tell her, "I can't believe that someone would be OK with a man having allegations of sexual assault sitting on the Supreme Court". He will testify under oath later today.

The high ground Grassley has given Democrats by his behavior at the hearing has been lifted even more by his disastrous decision to delegate Republican questioning to professional prosecutor Rachel Mitchell. God, I hope you never get it. In retrospect, I said and did things in high school that make me cringe now. But it's clear already that Republicans are paying a steep price for the starring role being played by committee chairman Chuck Grassley, who is acting as the ideal illustration of GOP Old White Male fecklessness in the presence of an alleged sexual-assault victim. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., outlining her sexual assault allegations.

Dr Ford answered questions about whether she had been sufficiently traumatized by her assault, about who paid for the polygraph test that she passed, and about whether she was really afraid of flying.

Kavanaugh came out with guns blazing, nearly as if he could yell the sexual assault allegations away.


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