Listen: Senate Judiciary Committee, Brett Kavanagh, Research Psychologist discussed on The Takeaway
"Thanks. This is the takeaway. I'm Sarah Gwen Silas, filling in for ten Zena Vega to Washington now where in allegation of sexual assault against judge. Brett Kavanagh has thrown his prime court confirmation process into question on Sunday. The Washington Post published article with Christine Blasi Ford. She is a research psychologist in northern California who says that Cavanaugh assaulted her at a party when the two of them were teenagers in the early one thousand nine hundred eighty s according to Ford Cavanaugh with stenciling drunk when the assault took place breath Kavanagh has denied the allegations saying in a statement Monday, this is a completely false accusation. I have never done anything like what the accuser describes to her. Or to anyone? The Senate Judiciary committee has scheduled a public hearing regarding the allegations for next Monday Alana shore is a congressional reporter for political and she's with me now to discuss where Kavanagh's confirmation process. Goes from here. Thanks for having me Alana, both Brad Kavanagh and Christine Blasi Ford. The woman who accused the supreme court nominee of sexual assault. Have now been called to testify and those will be public hearings. And this is a big deal. Can you just talk to us about what that means? Sure. But it's important for your listeners term member that Dr Ford has yet to accept this invitation. And when you really think about it. Her lawyer has said that she is willing to testify in a fair proceeding and this proceeding so far has been run and managed entirely by the GOP. It's not clear whether Democrats would even show up if this hearing happens because they have strenuously boycotted to conducting this process so fast without what they have described as a fuller FBI investigation. So so that's an important first step here because it seems like a big deal, but a lot of moving parts continued to be stolen flocks. And no one on the hill is one hundred percent sure that this hearing will truly happen as it's envisioned who made the decision for these hearings to be public, regardless of who ends up testifying. Why do you think they did that that was under pressure from Republicans on the Senate Judiciary committee, specifically Senator Jeff flake who said no just talking to them on the phone in private is not enough. The American people deserve a hearing on this Republican leaders were essentially forced by this. Handful of Republicans led us sensibly by flake. But Senator Susan Collins played a role Senator Lisa Murkowski. Ski really swing votes on the nomination. And so as you said there were a handful of Republican senators that did say that these allegations needed to be looked into by the Senate Judiciary committee before the confirmation process could proceed, but other Republicans have complained that Democrats only went public with this allegation in order to throw Kavanagh's confirmation into disarray at the last minute. Can you remind us of how the timeline here compares to Anita hill and her testimony against surpreme court Justice Clarence Thomas when when she accused him of sexual harassment. There are indeed some uncanny parallels between this case and the hill case in both instances the woman stepped forward and said I'm willing to tell my story after the initial hearings had already ended on the nomination. But senators had been talking to the woman in question at least one Senator before the hearing Scott started and in this case with right Cavanaugh. It was Diane Feinstein, the top democrat on the Senate Judiciary committee who was the only son. Aware of this far enough in advance her colleagues on the democratic side. And the committee didn't really get the full picture until last week. After a news website already had reported on the existence of this mysterious letter. So it's all happened fairly eleventh hour, and it is debatable. Whether Senator Feinstein should have told her fellow Democrats earlier, she says, I did the only thing I could do in this situation. Because Dr Ford wanted terming confidential what was I to do? Republicans say, well, we're not telling you to out Dr Ford against her will. But why didn't you refer this to the FBI when you've got it back in July and the rest of the committee Democrats because they weren't aware until the last minute are a bit caught in the middle on this.."