President Trump on Monday said he is standing by Brett Kavanaugh as a new allegation of sexual misconduct surfaced against the controversial Supreme Court nominee.
“Judge Kavanaugh is an outstanding person and I am with him all the way,” Trump told reporters after his arrival at the United Nations General Assembly in New York. “We’ll see how it goes with the Senate, we’ll see how it goes for the vote. I think it could be — there’s a chance this could be one of the single most unfair, unjust things to happen to a candidate for anything.”
Trump’s comments came a day after the New Yorker published the story of a woman, Deborah Ramirez, who alleges Kavanaugh thrust his penis in front of her face during a dorm-room party when they were students at Yale. Kavanaugh strongly denied the allegation, saying “this is a smear, plain and simple.” The White House dismissed it as “the latest in a coordinated smear campaign by the Democrats designed to tear down a good man.”
Ramirez is the second woman to publicly accuse Kavanaugh of sexual misconduct. The first, Christine Blasey Ford, said that Kavanaugh attempted to rape her at a party when they were teenagers. She and Kavanaugh are scheduled to appear before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Thursday.
Republican members of the committee have been pushing for a vote to confirm him to the nation’s highest court. Democrats have called for a delay and an FBI investigation into the accusations.
“I am with Judge Kavanaugh and I look forward to a vote,” Trump said Monday. “And for people to come out of the woodwork from 36 years ago and 30 years ago and never mention it and all of the sudden it happens, in my opinion, it’s totally political. It’s totally political.”
Trump, who had been uncharacteristically restrained in his initial response to Ford’s allegations, joined the attack on her credibility late last week.
“Judge Brett Kavanaugh is a fine man, with an impeccable reputation, who is under assault by radical left wing politicians who don’t want to know the answers,” Trump tweeted on Friday. “They just want to destroy and delay. Facts don’t matter. I go through this with them every single day in D.C.”
“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,” he continued. “I ask that she bring those filings forward so that we can learn date, time, and place!”
According to statistics cited by the national anti-sexual violence organization RAINN, the majority of sexual assaults aren’t reported to police, usually because of fears of retaliation.
“The radical left lawyers want the FBI to get involved NOW,” the president added. “Why didn’t someone call the FBI 36 years ago?”
Ford says she was sexually assaulted by Kavanaugh in the early 1980s at a house party in suburban Maryland. She was 15 years old at the time of the alleged incident. The FBI would not ordinarily have been involved in investigating a local crime.
Appearing on “CBS This Morning,” White House counselor Kellyanne Conway, who had earlier said Ford deserved to be heard and not attacked, said the continuing charges are “starting to feel like a vast left-wing conspiracy.”
Conway noted that there have been no allegations of misconduct against Kavanaugh in his years in public life, both as a White House official and federal appeals court judge.
“This may be the first time we ever heard of allegations against someone as a teenager that did not prey upon women thus as he became powerful,” she said.
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