After Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-IA) announced Monday that the first step in responding to sexual assault allegations against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh would be phone calls with committee staff, Democrats on the committee slammed Grassley for the move.
Democrats refused to participate in the calls with Kavanaugh and Ford set up by Grassley and argued instead that the FBI should investigate Christine Blasey Ford’s accusations about Kavanaugh.
Read the statement:
With only a few hours’ notice and over the objections of Ranking Member Feinstein, Judiciary Committee Republicans scheduled a staff-level phone call with Brett Kavanaugh concerning allegations that he sexually assaulted a young woman.
In view of the enormity and seriousness of these allegations, a staff-only phone call behind closed doors is unacceptable and Democratic staff will not participate. This isn’t how things should be done and is in complete violation of how this committee has worked in the past.
The FBI has the resources and know-how to conduct an objective, independent evaluation of these sensitive allegations with appropriately trained investigators. This isn’t just about an interview, it’s about analyzing information and gathering the facts. That’s what the FBI does, and that’s why they’re in charge of the background review process.
If that review is closed, we call on the FBI to reopen it and properly investigate this new, important information. Once we’ve received an updated background investigation file, the Senate Judiciary Committee should have the opportunity to review the file, seek additional information and conduct hearings as necessary to fully investigate these allegations and vet this candidate.