UPDATE, September 16, 4:09 p.m.: Christine Blasey Ford, a professor at Palo Alto University, spoke publicly for the first time about Brett Kavanaugh’s alleged attack on her in a Sunday Washington Post report. “I thought he might inadvertently kill me,” Ford told the Post. “He was trying to attack me and remove my clothing.” Senate Republicans reportedly plan to move forward in Kavanaugh’s confirmation process.
New details into U.S. Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh’s alleged sexual misconduct were revealed in a Friday report by the New Yorker.
A woman who hasn’t been identified and refused an interview request from the New Yorker alleged Kavanaugh and another classmate from Georgetown Preparatory School in Bethesda, Maryland, held her down and forced themselves on her.
“In the letter, the woman alleged that, during an encounter at a party, Kavanaugh held her down, and that he attempted to force himself on her,” reads the New Yorker report. “She claimed in the letter that Kavanaugh and a classmate of his, both of whom had been drinking, turned up music that was playing in the room to conceal the sound of her protests, and that Kavanaugh covered her mouth with his hand. She was able to free herself.”
The report brings clarity to speculation about Kavanaugh’s past after the Intercept reported that Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) had withheld a key constituent letter regarding the judge’s past from fellow Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee.
Feinstein released a statement on Thursday confirming the existence of the letter, noting she had turned it over to federal investigators. “I have received information from an individual concerning the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court,” Feinstein said in the statement. “That individual strongly requested confidentiality, declined to come forward or press the matter further, and I have honored that decision. I have, however, referred the matter to federal investigative authorities.”
Speculation over the contents of the letter continued when the New York Daily News reported that the letter was from a woman who accused Kavanaugh of sexual misconduct when the two were in high school.
The allegations were not public knowledge last week during Kavanaugh’s confirmation hearings, which were protested by hundreds of women. During the hearings, Sen. Mazie Hirono (D-HI) did ask Kavanaugh if he had ever been accused of sexual assault “since you became a legal adult,” to which he answered no.
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Asked about the allegations against Kavanaugh, a spokesperson for Georgetown Preparatory School told Rewire.News, “We have no knowledge regarding any accusation.”
Sen. Charles Grassley (R-IA), chairman of the Judiciary Committee, on Friday released a letter signed by 65 women who knew Kavanaugh in high school and say he “behaved honorably and treated women with respect.”
Dawn Laguens, executive vice president of Planned Parenthood Federation of America, said in a statement that the allegations against Kavanaugh should raise questions about the judge’s fitness to serve on the Supreme Court.
“Sexual assault is a violent abuse of power and should disqualify anyone from serving on the highest court in the land. Kavanaugh’s record of undermining women’s health and constitutional rights should already prevent his confirmation from moving forward,” she said. “These serious allegations raise even more questions about what we don’t know about Judge Kavanaugh.”
The Judiciary Committee is scheduled for a vote on Kavanaugh on September 20 before his nomination is sent to the full U.S. Senate for a floor vote.
This is a developing story. Rewire.News will continue to report as more information emerges.