The California professor Christine Blasey Ford who recently accused Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh of sexually assaulting her at a high school party, has called for a "full investigation" by the FBI before she goes to any congressional hearing or "interrogation" into her accusations.
Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley, responded to this call saying, Ford has been and still is invited to speak with the committee, but the FBI he said, would not have "any bearing on what Dr. Ford tells the committee, so there is no reason for any further delay.”
According to CNN, Lisa Banks, one of Ford's lawyers, said in a letter to Grassley, that Ford "will talk to the committee," but is not prepared for the hearing on Monday.
Banks goes on to say that Ford has been dealing with the receipt of threats since her name was publicly tied to the accusations.
"There should be no rush to a hearing," Banks continued.
Arizona Republican Sen. Jeff Flake, said he wanted to hear from Ford before voting on Kavanaugh's confirmation, but he along with other top Republicans who wished to hear from the accuser, have expressed that they will move forward with a vote if Ford decides not to testify.
Sen. Bob Corker, R-Tenn., took to Twitter on Tuesday saying, “After learning of the allegation, Chairman @ChuckGrassleytook immediate action to ensure both Dr. Ford and Judge Kavanaugh have the opportunity to be heard, in public or private. Republicans extended a hand in good faith. If we don’t hear from both sides on Monday, let’s vote.”
After learning of the allegation, Chairman @ChuckGrassley took immediate action to ensure both Dr. Ford and Judge Kavanaugh have the opportunity to be heard, in public or private. Republicans extended a hand in good faith. If we don’t hear from both sides on Monday, let’s vote.— Senator Bob Corker (@SenBobCorker) September 19, 2018
Fox News reports that not only has the committee pushed back the voting date which was initially scheduled for Thursday, but Republicans have repeatedly invited Ford and Kavanaugh to testify. Kavanaugh has agreed to testify in front of the committee, while Ford has refused to until an investigation is conducted.
Fox News reports that a federal law enforcement official told them that Ford’s request for the investigation was "totally inappropriate."
Chairman Grassley wrote, "The FBI has indicated to the committee and in public statements that it considers the matter closed.”
He continued, "The FBI does not make credibility determinations. The FBI provides information on a confidential basis in order for decision makers to determine an individual’s suitability. The Senate has the information it needs to follow up with witnesses and gather and assess the relevant evidence."
Reportedly, Grassley, threatened to scrap the proceeding if Ford refused to participate.
Former President George W. Bush released a statement of support on Tuesday saying, “Laura and I have known and respected Brett Kavanaugh for decades, and we stand by our comments the night Judge Kavanaugh was nominated: “He is a fine husband, father, and friend — and a man of the highest integrity. He will make a superb Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States.”
Many Republicans are calling the timing of the allegations into question believing them to be a thinly veiled effort to stall Kavanaugh's nomination at the last minute, noting Top Ranking Democrat Dianne Feinstein learned of these accusations in July, but only now chose to reveal them to federal authorities.
Feinstein and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer released statements saying, "I agree with her 100 percent that the rushed process to hold a hearing on Monday has been unfair and is reminiscent of the treatment of Anita Hill," Feinstein said. "I also agree that we need the facts before senators—not staff or lawyers—speak to witnesses.”
Feinstein continued, "We should honor Dr. Blasey Ford’s wishes and delay this hearing.”
I agree with her 100 percent that the rushed process to hold a hearing on Monday has been unfair and is reminiscent of the treatment of Anita Hill. I also agree that we need the facts before senators—not staff or lawyers—speak to witnesses.— Sen Dianne Feinstein (@SenFeinstein) September 19, 2018
Schumer said in a separate statement, "Dr. Ford’s call for the FBI to investigate... demonstrates her confidence that when all the facts are examined by an impartial investigation, her account will be further corroborated and confirmed."
Dr. Ford’s call for the FBI to investigate also demonstrates her confidence that when all the facts are examined by an impartial investigation, her account will be further corroborated and confirmed.— Chuck Schumer (@SenSchumer) September 19, 2018
Photo courtesy: Getty Images/Alex Edelman/Stringer