Kavanaugh nomination vote set for Monday, unless accuser testifies on sex abuse claims

The Judiciary Committee will hold a vote on US Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh on Monday, unless a deal is reached soon with his accuser Christine Blasey Ford, who accuses him of sexual assault, to testify before the panel.

“I’m providing a notice of a vote to occur Monday in the event that Dr. Ford’s attorneys don’t respond or Dr. Ford decides not to testify,” the panel’s chairman, Senator Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) said in a statement. “In the event that we can come to a reasonable resolution as I’ve been seeking all week, then I will postpone the committee vote to accommodate her testimony. We cannot continue to delay.”

The university professor, who is accusing Kavanaugh of sexual misconduct sometime back in 1982, has placed Kavanaugh’s nomination to the Supreme Court in jeopardy. For the entire week, US lawmakers have been approaching Christine Blasey Ford to testify against the 53-year-old before the judge’s confirmation process can proceed. On Friday, the Committee announced that the Monday hearing for Kavanaugh and his accuser to both appear before the US lawmakers has been called off.

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© Christian Ohde

The committee has now set a 10pm Friday deadline for Ford to accept the invitation to testify on Wednesday. If she declines and no other deal is reached, the vote on Kavanaugh will take place Monday.

Ford, through her lawyer, has repeatedly made clear throughout the week that she was not ready to appear before the panel, citing “death threats” made against her and calling for a full FBI investigation into her accusations.

The limbo is making the Republicans on Capitol Hill edgy as they remain eager to push through Donald Trump’s nominee before November’s mid-term elections, in which they could potentially lose control of the Senate.

On Friday President Trump once again lashed out against Kavanaugh’s accuser, noting that if the attack “was as bad as she says,” then she should have reported it to the authorities more than 30 years ago.

Kavanaugh accuser ‘not ready’ to speak to Senate, wants FBI to probe sex assault claims first

“I have no doubt that, if the attack on Dr. Ford was as bad as she says, charges would have been immediately filed with local Law Enforcement Authorities by either her or her loving parents,” Trump tweeted. “I ask that she bring those filings forward so that we can learn date, time, and place.”

Ford accuses Kavanaugh of sexually assaulting her at a party back in high school. The judge denies it happened, and is willing to testify to clear his name.

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