Home WORLD Woman who accused U.S. Supreme Court nominee of sexual misconduct goes public

Woman who accused U.S. Supreme Court nominee of sexual misconduct goes public

Final day of marathon U.S. Supreme Court confirmation hearing for Brett Kavanaugh begins

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A California woman who has accused Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh of sexual misconduct when they were in high school has come forward, alleging in an interview that Kavanaugh pinned her to a bed at a Maryland house party and clumsily tried to remove her clothing.

Christine Blasey Ford said in the interview with The Washington Post that Kavanaugh and a friend — both “stumbling drunk,” she says — corralled her into a bedroom during the party in the early 1980s. She says Kavanaugh groped her over her clothes, grinded his body against hers and tried to take off her one-piece swimsuit and the outfit she wore over it.

Kavanaugh covered her mouth with his hand when she tried to scream, she says.

“I thought he might inadvertently kill me,” says Ford, 51, a professor at Palo Alto University in California. “He was trying to attack me and remove my clothing.”

She says she was able to get away after Kavanaugh’s friend jumped on top of them and everyone tumbled.

Kavanaugh repeats denial

Kavanaugh has denied the allegation and repeated that denial again Sunday through the White House.

“I categorically and unequivocally deny this allegation. I did not do this back in high school or at any time,” Kavanaugh said.

Ford says in the interview that she never revealed what had happened to her until 2012, when she and her husband sought couples therapy.

Portions of her therapist’s notes, which Ford provided to the Post, do not mention Kavanaugh by name but say Ford reported being attacked by students “from an elitist boys’ school” who went on to become “highly respected and high-ranking members of society in Washington.”

Kavanaugh, 53, is a federal appeals judge in Washington. President Donald Trump nominated him in July to replace retiring Justice Anthony Kennedy on the U.S. Supreme Court.

The therapist’s notes say four boys were involved, but Ford says that was an error by the therapist. Ford says four boys were at the party, but only two boys were in the room at the time.

Feinstein calls for FBI investigation

Ford had contacted the Post through a tip line in early July after it had become clear that Kavanaugh was on Trump’s shortlist to fill a vacancy, but before the Republican president nominated him.

A registered Democrat, Ford contacted her representative in Congress, Democrat Ann Eshoo, around the same time. In late July, Ford sent a letter through Eshoo’s office to Sen. Dianne Feinstein of California, the top Democrat on the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Feinstein revealed late last week that she had received a letter, but said the author did not want to come forward. Republicans criticized her decision to withhold the allegations during Kavanaugh’s Senate confirmation hearings.

Sen. Dianne Feinstein said Sunday the FBI should investigate Ford’s allegations against Kavanaugh and that the probe should occur before the Senate proceeds with the judge’s confirmation. (Joshua Roberts/Reuters)

On Sunday, Feinstein said the FBI should investigate now that Ford has spoken to the Post. She said the investigation should occur before the Senate moves ahead with Kavanaugh’s nomination. 

Sen. Chuck Schumer, the Senate Democratic leader, said postponing the vote on Kavanaugh’s nomination — which is planned for Thursday — is warranted until what he called “serious and credible allegations” are thoroughly investigated.

But Republicans on the judiciary committee gave no indication they plan to allow the allegations to delay Kavanaugh’s confirmation. A spokesperson for Sen. Chuck Grassley, the chair of the committee, said that “it’s disturbing that these uncorroborated allegations from more than 35 years ago” would surface ahead of voting.

He pointed out that the judge had already gone through several days of hearings and was vetted by the FBI.

Ford told the Post she decided to come forward after watching portions of her story come out without her permission. She said, if anyone was going to tell her story, she wanted it to be her.