supreme-court

Location, Location, Location: Hearing With Kavanaugh's Accuser Could be in Tight Quarters (For Now)

Thursday's blockbuster hearing featuring Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh and his accuser is scheduled to be in a tiny room, but that could change. (Sarah Silbiger/CQ Roll Call)

Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh and his accuser Christine Blasey Ford are expected to testify Thursday in a tiny room before the Senate Judiciary Committee.  If the hearing is held in the small room as scheduled, there won't be much room for the public — including protesters — or reporters to watch the proceedings. But that could change. 

The Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on tap for Thursday is set to be in Dirksen 226, a small room that can accommodate lawmakers, a few staffers and a witness, but not much beyond that. The highly anticipated meeting is sure to draw enormous media attention and throngs of protesters.

Mitch McConnell Reaffirms Vow for Senate to Vote on Kavanaugh
Nothing, it seems, could keep the majority leader from giving the Supreme Court nominee a floor vote

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has reaffirmed his vote to get Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh a floor vote. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Updated 5:11 p.m. | Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has not heard anything that should slow confirmation of Judge Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court and is pledging to push ahead.

“Judge Kavanaugh will be confirmed,” McConnell said on the Senate floor. He was echoing comments he made Friday, before revelations of additional accusations of sexual assault were leveled at Kavanaugh on Sunday.

Twitter Battles Over Kavanaugh Nomination Roar
Social media fuels partisan fire

Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh is at the center of a partisan Twitter war. (Sarah Silbiger/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The political din over Brett Kavanaugh’s Supreme Court nomination features the same kind of overheated rhetoric and partisanship of previous legendary confirmation fights. But this time, there is Twitter.

The preferred social media platform of President Donald Trump — the one that allows him to deliver his unfiltered message broadly and often shape the day’s media coverage — has introduced that same dynamic to the latest nomination for the high court, 280 characters at a time.

Iowa Republicans Rally Christian Coalition Behind Brett Kavanaugh
Rep. Steve King suggests any man could now be accused of sexual misconduct

Rep. Steve King, R-Iowa, said sexual assault allegations against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh amounted to "character assassination." (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Rep. Steve King fiercely defended Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh over the weekend at an Iowa Faith and Freedom Coalition event, saying that accusations that Kavanaugh sexually assaulted a woman who went to high school with him amounted to “character assassination.”

King and other Iowa GOP leaders, including Sen. Joni Ernst, Rep. David Young, and Gov. Kim Reynolds, rallied the nearly 700 Christians in the crowd behind Kavanaugh, the Des Moines Register reported, as Iowa’s senior senator, Judiciary Chairman Charles E. Grassley, negotiates the conditions of a public hearing this Thursday with the nominee's accuser, California psychology professor Christine Blasey Ford.

Trump on Kavanaugh: ‘I Am With Him All The Way’
President stands by pick despite second accusation of sexual misconduct

President Donald Trump defended his Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh while speaking to reporters at a meeting on the global drug problem at the United Nations on Monday. (Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

President Donald Trump on Monday said he is sticking with Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, telling reporters “I am with him all the way.”

“There’s a chance that this could be one of the single most unfair, unjust things to happen to a candidate for anything,” the president said on the sidelines of a United Nations conference in New York hours after another accuser came forward alleging sexual misconduct by Kavanaugh.

Kavanaugh Controversy and Violence Against Women Act Collide on Capitol Hill
Not the first time a Supreme Court fight and VAWA have been linked

Sen. Mazie Hirono, D-Hawaii, and Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y., hold a press conference with Holton-Arms alumnae in support of Christine Blasey Ford in the Hart Senate Office Building on Thursday, Sept. 20, 2018. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Christine Blasey Ford’s sexual assault allegation against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh upended his confirmation process and brought sexual misconduct back into the spotlight on Capitol Hill. While the Senate Judiciary Committee digs into what happened more than 30 years ago, other lawmakers are working to extend and expand protections for victims under the Violence Against Women Act.

The competing claims from Ford and Kavanaugh have divided both the Senate and the country, with Ford accusing Kavanaugh of sexually assaulting her at a party when they were teenagers, and Kavanaugh issuing blanket denials and saying he welcomes the chance to “clear my name.” 

Kavanaugh Has Bumpy Week Ahead as Two More Women Come Forward
Sen. Dianne Feinstein calls for stop to the confirmation process

Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation process has been upended by allegations of sexual assault. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Updated 10:25 p.m. | The same day the Senate Judiciary Committee set a hearing about a decadesold allegation of sexual assault against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, more allegations of sexual misdeeds from women in his past emerged to cause more turbulence for Republican efforts to make him a justice.

One woman told The New Yorker in an article Sunday that the federal appeals court judge sexually assaulted her at a college party in the 1980s. Separately, an attorney for another woman said his client had information about Kavanaugh’s behavior at parties at high school parties and wanted to testify as well.

Kavanaugh Accuser Agrees to Talk to Senate Judiciary Committee
Christine Blasey Ford has accused nominee of sexually assaulting her decades ago

Protesters at the Dirksen Building office of Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, on Thursday show their support for Christine Blasey Ford’s allegations of sexual assault against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Christine Blasey Ford agreed Saturday to discuss with the Senate Judiciary Committee next week her allegation that Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her decades ago.

In an email from Ford’s lawyers to Senate Judiciary Committee staff, Ford accepted the “request to provide her first-hand knowledge of Brett Kavanaugh’s sexual misconduct” but did not specify how she would do that. Judiciary Chairman Charles E. Grassley offered to have Ford testify Wednesday in public or private, but also offered her a public or private interview.

Game On: Grassley and Kavanaugh Accuser Continue to Play Chicken
Deadlines come and go as nomination is delayed

Senate Judiciary Chairman Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, has extended a deadline for Christine Blasey Ford to testify about her claim she was sexually assaulted by Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh when they were teen-agers (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

When — or if — Chistine Blasey Ford will testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee about her claim that Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her is very much up in the air.

But a pattern has emerged. Deadlines come. Deadlines go. In the meantime, the debate over what happened — and the fate of Kavanaugh’s nomination — continues.

Trump Slams McCaskill for Opposing ‘Truly Spectacular’ Kavanaugh
Missouri attorney general is in Senate dogfight with Democratic incumbent

President Donald Trump, here at a rally in Las Vegas on Thursday, was in Missouri the following day to boost Republican Senate candidate Josh Hawley. (Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

President Donald Trump hailed Missouri Republican Senate candidate Josh Hawley as a “star” Friday night, while lambasting the Democratic incumbent, Claire McCaskill, for opposing his “truly spectacular” Supreme Court nominee. 

The president, as he often does for Republican candidates, attempted to boost Hawley, the state attorney general, by calling him onstage at the rally in Springfield, Missouri, to speak behind the presidential podium with the executive seal.