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FLAKE: PUT BRAKES ON KAV. VOTE

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The Senate Judiciary Committee chairman is working to keep the Supreme Court nominee’s confirmation on track after Christine Blasey Ford accused Kavanaugh of sexual assault.

Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) said Sunday he was working on setting up bipartisan calls to keep Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation on track.

Grassley’s office said it was working to hold calls alongside Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), the top Democrat on the committee, to speak with Kavanaugh and Christine Blasey Ford, the woman alleging the judge sexually assaulted her more than 30 years ago.

“The Chairman and Ranking Member routinely hold bipartisan staff calls with nominees when updates are made to nominees’ background files,” Grassley’s office said in a statement. “Given the late addendum to the background file and revelations of Dr. Ford’s identity, Chairman Grassley is actively working to set up such follow-up calls with Judge Kavanaugh and Dr. Ford ahead of Thursday’s scheduled vote.” 

Ford revealed her identity on Sunday in The Washington Post after information leaked that Feinstein was in possession of a letter accusing Kavanaugh of sexually assaulting a woman in his high school years. Ford alleges that Kavanaugh was “stumbling drunk” at a party in the 1980s where he pinned her to a bed, groped her, grinded his body against hers and attempted to pull off her clothing. 

Kavanaugh has denied the allegations. 

Republican members of the Senate Judiciary Committee initially released a statement Sunday calling Ford’s motive into question and seemed ready to continue with Kavanaugh’s confirmation as scheduled.

Sen. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) told Politico Sunday that he was “not comfortable” with moving forward without speaking to Ford.

“We need to hear from her. And I don’t think I’m alone in this,” Flake told Politico.


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