A third woman has come forward with allegations implicating Brett Kavanaugh of sexual misconduct, but the Senate Judiciary Committee does not intend to delay Thursday’s hearing, which will include testimony from accuser Dr. Christine Blasey Ford. When asked whether there may be a separate hearing to assess the subsequent accusations, Senate Judiciary Committee chair Chuck Grassley declined to give a definitive answer.
“Every time that there’s been accusations made we’ve tried to follow up where we could get a contact,” Grassley told reporters. “So obviously this morning we had this contact and our investigators were on it immediately, and I can’t say anything beyond that.”
When asked about scheduling a second hearing to include the third allegation by Julie Swetnick, Grassley said, “We’re going to take this step by step and you’ll have to ask me that question Thursday night.”
Senate Republicans have rushed forward with Kavanaugh’s confirmations without an independent FBI investigation, as requested by Ford, have not subpoenoed other witnesses, and have repeatedly attempted to discredit Ford in an effort to move forward with a vote, scheduled for Friday.
Democrats have condemned Republicans for scheduling a vote before hearing from Ford. “For Republicans to schedule a Friday vote on Brett Kavanaugh today, two days before Dr. Blasey Ford has had a chance to tell her story, is outrageous,” sad ranking Democrat Sen Dianne Feinstein. “First Republicans demanded Dr. Blasey Ford testify immediately. Now Republicans don’t even need to hear her before they move ahead with a vote.”
The vote cannot proceed unless a “majority of the members” are ready, per Politico. But Republicans, who have rushed the nomination process and attempted to discredit Ford, have a one person majority on the Senate Judiciary Committee. “It could take place Friday, or it could not,” Grassley said regarding the vote. “That kind of depends upon what happens tomorrow.”