Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley sent a letter to Attorney General Jeff Sessions, referring Julie Swetnick, one of Brett Kavanaugh’s accusers, and her attorney Michael Avenatti for investigation.
Swetnick’s allegations came days before Judge Kavanaugh’s second appearance before the Judiciary Committee. She swore in an affidavit that Kavanaugh was present at a party where she claims she was gang-raped in 1982. She additionally claimed that she was aware of efforts by Kavanaugh, his friend Mark Judge, and others to spike women’s drinks so that they would become incapacitated and unable to resist sexual advances.
In asking for the Department of Justice to investigate, he said Swetnick and Avenatti, conspired to “knowingly mislead the committee.” He asked that the DOJ investigate the pair for issues “relating to a potential conspiracy to provide materially false statements to Congress and obstruct a congressional committee investigation.”
Grassley’s letter reads, “Mr. Avenatti and Ms. Swetnick made grave allegations against Judge Kavanaugh, and the Committee diverted significant resources to investigate the claims. However, in light of Ms. Swetick’s and Mr. Avenatti’s own statements to the media, information obtained from Committee interviews of her associates, and publicly reported information about her and Mr. Avenatti, it has become apparent that the statements Mr. Avenatti and Ms. Swetnick submitted to the Committee likely contained materially false claims.”
Avenatti fired back at Senator Grassley on Twitter, taking shots at the way he handled the Kavanaugh investigation and his lack of legal training. He said, “It is ironic that Senator Grassley now is interested in investigations. He didn’t care when it came to putting a man on SCOTUS for life. We welcome the investigation as now we can finally get to the bottom of Judge Kavanaugh’s lies and conduct. Let the truth be known.”
He continued, “Maybe if Grassley was actually a lawyer that knew something about the law, he would realize what he has done. He just opened up Pandora’s box as it relates to Justice Kavanaugh’s conduct. It is Christmas in October!”
During the confirmation hearings, some Republicans on the Judiciary Committee circulated a statement from one her former boyfriends in an attempt to discredit her testimony. Avenatti called the statement “bogus and outrageous.”
After the most bruising confirmation battle in recent history, Judge Kavanaugh was confirmed by a 50-48 vote in the Senate and he was sworn in shortly after.
The Washington Post reached out to the Justice Department for a statement about Senator Grassley’s letter, but they declined to comment.
Photo courtesy: Getty Images/Brendan Smialowski/Stringer