Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley issued the following statement
tonight after lawyers for Christine Blasey Ford sent
to the Judiciary Committee responding to its invitations
for her to share her story with committee members.
should be subject to threats and intimidation, and Dr. Ford is no
exception. These are serious allegations and Dr. Ford deserves to be
after learning of Dr. Ford’s identity from news reports Sunday, committee staff
started working to gather facts related to her claims. We’ve offered Dr.
Ford the opportunity to share her story with the committee, as her attorney
said yesterday she was willing to do. We offered her a public or a private
hearing as well as staff-led interviews, whichever makes her most
comfortable. The invitation for Monday still stands.
Ford’s testimony would reflect her personal knowledge and memory of events.
Nothing the FBI or any other investigator does would have any bearing on what
Dr. Ford tells the committee, so there is no reason for any further delay.”
to suggestions by Dr. Ford’s attorneys, the committee had no plans to place Dr.
Ford and Judge Kavanaugh on a panel together, and never indicated plans to do
so. Grassley’s staff offered Dr. Ford multiple dates as well as a choice of
providing information in a public or private setting.
Member Feinstein first received a letter with allegations against Judge Brett
Kavanaugh from Dr. Ford in July. However, Feinstein neglected to notify
Committee Republicans of the letter until the day of the first Committee
markup, six weeks after receiving the letter and well after the vetting and
hearing process had concluded. Feinstein referred the letter to the FBI,
which added it to Kavanaugh’s background investigation file. She should have
treated these allegations seriously, as Grassley has done, in immediately
acting upon hearing of them.
FBI has indicated to the committee and in public statements that it considers
the matter closed. The FBI does not make credibility determinations. The FBI
provides information on a confidential basis in order for decision makers to
determine an individual’s suitability. The Senate has the information it needs
to follow up with witnesses and gather and assess the relevant evidence.
staff has sought to work with the Democratic staff to reach out to relevant
witnesses. The Democratic staff declined to participate in a follow-up call
with Judge Kavanaugh Monday regarding these allegations. And they have declined
to join efforts to conduct a bipartisan investigation of the allegations.