The GOP is tearing up all the Senate rules they can in their desperate attempt to get Kavanaugh confirmed.
Part of that plan includes trying to make sure as little new information as possible is heard at Thursday’s hearing of the Senate Judiciary Committee.
There, Dr. Christine Blasey Ford is scheduled to testify about her claim of assault and attempted rape at the hands of Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh.
No witnesses are allowed, even though Ford’s attorneys have informed the committee of four people who can corroborate her account of the high school assault.
Also absent from the hearing will be Kavanaugh’s second accuser, Deborah Ramirez, who is willing to testify.
She told The New Yorker that while she was at Yale University with Kavanaugh, he “exposed himself at a drunken dormitory party, thrust his penis in her face, and caused her to touch it without her consent as she pushed him away.”
Kavanaugh’s own roommate from Yale says that he believes Ramirez, in part because Kavanaugh was such a “heavy drinker” at the time who became “aggressive and belligerent when he was very drunk.”
Ramirez’s attorney, John Clune, reports that he’s getting the run around from Republican staffers on the committee who on Tuesday night simply refused to take part in a previously scheduled conference call to discuss the accusers claims.
“The difficulty is every time we try to set up a phone call, the majority party either changes the rules of the phone call or they want additional information as a condition of even having a phone call with us,” Clune told CNN.
“We finally had a phone call scheduled for 7 o’clock Eastern this evening, we got on the phone, and only the minority party showed.”
That’s now how any of this normally works.
In an email exchange this week, a Democratic staffer from the committee stressed, “The Committee does not usually refuse to talk with counsel (or whistleblowers), and also does not usually place preconditions on getting on the phone to discuss next steps, so I’m not sure why that is happening here.”
Republicans are essentially stonewalling Ramirez — when they’re not actively smearing her.
On Tuesday, Trump ridiculed Ramirez and her account, claiming she was “all messed up” at the time of the alleged attack at Yale.
The day before, Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT), who sits on the Judiciary Committee, dismissed Ramirez’s allegation as a “phony.” Asked how he knew that without ever talking to her or hearing her testify, Hatch answered, “Because I know it is, that’s why.”
As for Ford, her attorneys have produced four sworn declarations from people who can confirm her claims about Kavanaugh, USA Today reports.
One of the declarations comes from a friend, Keith Koegler. He says Ford told him about being assaulted back in high school by someone who went on to become a federal judge, although Ford didn’t mention the attacker’s ‘name.
On June 29, 2018, two days after Justice Anthony Kennedy announced his retirement, and days before Kavanaugh was picked to fill his seat, Koegler emailed Ford and asked if she would tell him the name of the federal judge who had attacked her.
Ford’s email response: “Brett Kavanaugh.”