08:27 GMT +321 October 2018
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    U.S. President Donald Trump introduces his Supreme Court nominee judge Brett Kavanaugh in the East Room of the White House in Washington

    Panel Dems Want to Postpone Kavanaugh Vote as He Denies Sex Assault Allegations

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    The development comes hours after a lawyer of the woman accusing Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh of sexually assaulting her at a high school party in 1982, told NBC that her client was willing to testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee.

    All ten Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee have asked the panel's Republican chairman, Senator Chuck Grassley, to postpone the vote on Kavanaugh's nomination, scheduled for September 20. The panel will decide on the next steps only after the FBI has completed its review of Ford's allegations, the Democrats wrote in a letter to the chairman.

    Meanwhile, Brett Kavanaugh broke his silence to address the sexual misconduct allegations and expressed his willingness to "refute" them before the Senate Judiciary panel:

    “This is a completely false allegation. I have never done anything like what the accuser describes—to her or to anyone. Because this never happened, I had no idea who was making this accusation until she identified herself yesterday. I am willing to talk to the Senate Judiciary Committee in any way the Committee deems appropriate to refute this false allegation, from 36 years ago, and defend my integrity.”

    Earlier in the day, Debra Katz, the lawyer of the woman accusing Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh of “attempting to rape” her at a high school party in 1982, told NBC’s “Today” show that her client was willing to testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee.

    “She believes that if it were not for the severe intoxication of Brett Kavanaugh, she would have been raped,” Katz told the NBC.

    Katz elaborated that her client, Christine Blasey Ford, was “willing to do whatever it takes to get her story forth,” but at the same time stressed that her claims were not “politically motivated.”

    “No one in their right mind regardless of their motive would want to inject themselves into this process and face the kind of annihilation that she will be subjected to by those who want this nomination to go through. This is not a politically motivated action. In fact, she was quite reluctant to come forward, and she was in fact outed after she had made the decision not to come forward,” the attorney went on saying.

    Ford made the allegations in a Washington Post article, in which she described how a drunken Kavanaugh had held her down, groped her and allegedly tried to prevent her from calling out during a high school party in 1980s. She kept silence about the purported incident for over three decades, but after news of Kavanaugh’s nomination broke, the woman decided to bring the allegation to the Post.

    Ford then laid out the accusations in a letter to her congresswoman, Anna Eshoo (D-CA), whose office, in turn, sent the confidential letter to US Sen. Dianne Feinstein, the ranking Democrat on the Judiciary Committee.

    Last week, Kavanaugh issued a statement to denounce the allegations against him: “I categorically and unequivocally deny this allegation. I did not do this back in high school or at any time.”

    In July, conservative Federal Appeals Court Judge Brett Kavanaugh was nominated by US President Donald Trump to serve as an associate justice on the Supreme Court of the US following the retirement of Justice Anthony Kennedy.

    Tags:
    nominee, judge, testimony, sexual assault, Senate, Supreme Court, Brett Kavanaugh, United States
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