Latest FBI Kavanaugh Probe Provides Little New

Saul Bowman
October 5, 2018

The high-stakes showdown over Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh is turning into a battle of public relations; insight from crisis management consultant Eric Dezenhall.

The FBI is expected to give the Senate a supplemental background report on Kavanaugh later Wednesday.

The report is being closely guarded with each senator being given one hour to review it in a secure room. However, her lawyer has complained that the Federal Bureau of Investigation has not contacted any of them.

Deborah Ramirez, one of two women who have accused Kavanaugh of sexual abuse, said in an interview that she had been hopeful that her story would be investigated when two agents drove from Denver to Boulder, Colorado, last weekend to interview her at her lawyer's office.

Senators have been told not to reveal what the report says, but it remains to be seen whether that secrecy will hold. Underscoring the GOP effort to vote on Kavanaugh quickly - and end the chances for fresh allegations to emerge - he said "it shouldn't take long" for lawmakers to read the report. And investigators failed to interview key witnesses who could have helped corroborate allegations of sexual misconduct by Kavanaugh, or exposed lies he appears to have told the Senate while under oath.

Last week, Christine Blasey Ford told the Senate Judiciary Committee that Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her at a high school party in the early 1980s. Kavanaugh has denied the claims.

Senator Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) lit into the mainstream media about what he called a bias against Republicans at a media conference Thursday about the impending vote to confirm Justice Brett Kavanaugh.

So Republicans eagerly want to confirm Kavanaugh and need every vote they can get in a closely divided Senate chamber.

Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowski, said she was "still reviewing" her decision.

"This investigation found no hint of misconduct", Grassley said in a statement.

Trump on Tuesday inflamed tensions over Kavanaugh's nomination by mocking Blasey Ford at a Republican rally in Mississippi. Kavanaugh has called her accusations a "joke".

Still undecided on backing the conservative judge, Senator Collins denounced the president's comments ridiculing Ford as "just plain wrong". She would not say if the remarks would affect her vote. Flake, said, "To discuss something this sensitive at a political rally is just not right, is just not right". I wish he hadn't have done it. Flake added, "I wish he hadn't done it".

As he flew aboard Air Force One to the MS rally, Trump was enraged by New York Times articles about Kavanaugh's high school and college years and alleging tax avoidance efforts by the president and his family, according to a person familiar with the situation who spoke on the condition of anonymity.

President Trump tweeted on Thursday that "mean and despicable democrats" had treated Mr Kavanaugh harshly and unfairly and that was having an effect on the voters. The group says in a statement that at last week's dramatic Senate Judiciary Committee hearing, he showed "extreme partisan bias", demonstrating he lacks the temperament to join the high court. He had previously spoken to The New Yorker about Ramirez on condition of anonymity, but he said that he is now willing to be identified because he believes that the F.B.I. must thoroughly investigate her allegation. I don't know, but I had one beer. Oh good. How did you get home? She remembered that when Kavanaugh put his hand over her mouth to stop her from yelling "It was hard for me to breathe, and I thought that Brett was accidentally going to kill me". I don't remember. Where's the place? I don't know. Upstairs, downstairs, where was it? I don't know. I don't know!

Republicans now hold a one-person edge in the Senate, with 51 of the Senate's 100 seats.

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