Guess what? The White House has found no corroboration of the allegations of sexual misconduct against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh after examining interview reports from the FBI’s latest probe into the judge’s background. Neither has the GOP majority on the Senate Judiciary Committee.
This leaves senators in much the same position as last week—faced with two witnesses providing mutually exclusive accounts and forced to decide between them. The investigation, which concluded two days before its Friday deadline, has faced mounting criticism in recent days from Democrats who have said the probe wasn’t appropriately comprehensive.
Here’s a list of the people who we know have not been interviewed:
- A suitemate of Kavanaugh’s has now told the New Yorker he remembers hearing at the time about the incident Deborah Ramirez has recounted. Ramirez, who has been interviewed, had claimed that Kavanaugh exposed himself to her during a dorm party at Yale. The suitemate, Kenneth G. Appold, now says he is “one-hundred-per-cent certain” that he was told the culprit was Kavanaugh. He does say he never discussed this with Ramirez, but he claims an eyewitness described the episode to him at the time. Appold has tried to share this story with the FBI, but there’s no indication the FBI is willing to hear from him.
- A classmate of Kavanaugh’s at Georgetown Prep now strongly challenges one of Kavanaugh’s assertions under oath. The person told the New Yorker that he heard Kavanaugh talk repeatedly about Renate Dolphin as someone “that everyone passed around for sex,” and even heard Kavanaugh singing a rhyme that included the words “you wanna get laid, you can make it with REE-NATE.” Kavanaugh (and many others) described themselves in their yearbook as a “Renate Alumnius,” but Kavanaugh has denied under oath that this was a sexual reference, claiming, ludicrously, that it was intended to show “affection.”
- This classmate is not named by the New Yorker. But he put his name on a statement to the FBI and Judiciary Committee that makes this claim, and he is prepared to talk to the FBI. There is no indication this happened.
- James Roche, one of Kavanaugh’s roommates at Yale, has written a piece for Slate that claims Kavanaugh lied under oath about his use of slang and his drinking. Roche claims that Kavanaugh “regularly” blacked out. Roche has offered to talk to the FBI, but there’s no indication this happened.
- Roche also pointedly added of Kavanaugh: “He said that ‘boofing’ was farting and the ‘Devil’s Triangle’ was a drinking game. ‘Boofing’ and ‘Devil’s Triangle’ are sexual references. I know this because I heard Brett and his friends using these terms on multiple occasions.” Roche concluded that Kavanaugh “has demonstrated a willingness to be untruthful under oath about easily verified information.”
- NBC News reports that the FBI has not contacted dozens of people who could potentially corroborate the allegations against Kavanaugh or testify to his behavior at the time. This includes many people who knew either Ford or Ramirez at the time, and people who actually approached the FBI offering information.
- The Post reports that Ramirez’s lawyers provided the FBI with a list of more than 20 people who might have relevant information, but “as of Wednesday, Ramirez’s team had no indication that the bureau had interviewed any of them.”
- Neither Ford nor Kavanaugh have been interviewed by the FBI. As the Brookings Institution’s Susan Hennessey points out: “It is inconceivable they could close a real investigation without re-interviewing Kavanaugh.”
The Senate tweeted yesterday: “Under the provisions of Rule XXII of the Standing Rules of the Senate, tomorrow is the intervening day on the Kavanaugh nomination. The cloture vote on the nomination will occur one hour after the Senate convenes on Friday.”
Majority Leader Mitch McConnell tweeted “I just filed cloture on Judge Kavanaugh’s nomination to the Supreme Court. There will be plenty of time for Members to review and be briefed on this supplemental material before a Friday cloture vote.”
The clock has been started, and Friday is the day when Senators can read the FBI’s enhanced background investigation results, and when the key vote to end debate (cloture) will happen.
The loop seems complete. Flake and Collins seem to believe this was a complete investigation.
November 9, 2016 — elections have consequences. And the GOP is complicit in all of this.
this is going to rank up there w/ 2000 Florida recount and Anita Hill.— Eric Boehlert (@EricBoehlert) October 4, 2018
Every Republican editorial is like, “While I spoke out against Donald Trump running over children with a car during the campaign, now that he has run over children with a car, it’s time for Democrats to be more civil”— Mike Drucker (@MikeDrucker) October 4, 2018
Christine Ford’s attorneys write a letter:
On CNN, Senator @JeffMerkley was asked if he reviewed the FBI 302s and he said yes and added "it's a complete coverup."— Yashar Ali 🐘 (@yashar) October 4, 2018
Brett Kavanaugh is a petulant liar — about matters large and small — and he often tells his lies under oath.— Media Matters (@mmfa) October 4, 2018
News reports and personal accounts prove it. https://t.co/YbGcQNcf1Y pic.twitter.com/Wa9QpY9ENO