Friday, 21 September 2018

Hillary Clinton urges the FBI to investigate Kavanaugh sexual assault claim

Hillary urges the FBI to investigate Kavanaugh sexual assault claim

Hillary Clinton has called for an FBI investigation into Christine Blasey Ford's claim that Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh tried to rape her when they were both in high school.

'It would be very easy for the FBI to go back and finish the background investigation, to investigate these charges,' she told Late Show host Stephen Colbert in an appearance on Friday night. 'That's what is a fair request, for due process to be asked for.'

The FBI has said it lacks jurisdiction to investigate Ford's claim that Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her in a suburban Maryland home in the early 1980s, unless the White House requests the probe as an extension of the nominee's background check.

Former Democratic presidential nominee Clinton accused Senate Republicans of trying to 'rush' the nomination process - while many Republicans have accused Senate Democrats of doing everything possible to stall the vote until after the midterms.

'They want to push this through and along comes another potential charge that has to be investigated,' said Clinton.

'And they've done everything they can to try to ignore it, to undermine it as opposed to saying 'we are stewards of the public trust.''

Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley, an Iowa Republican, has engaged in extensive negotiations with Ford to schedule a hearing for her to testify and set forth her allegations.

Hillary urges the FBI to investigat Kavanaugh sexual assault claimHillary urges the FBI to investigat Kavanaugh sexual assault claim
Kavanaugh (left) strongly denies the claim and has offered to testify at any time, but Ford (right) has yet to agree to appear in a hearing, after multiple days of discussions

On Friday night, he granted her another extension to commit to testifying.

'With all the extensions we give Dr Ford to decide if she still wants to testify to the Senate I feel like I’m playing 2nd trombone in the judiciary orchestra and [minority leader Chuck] Schumer is the conductor,' Grassley lamented in a tweet late Friday.

Clinton, however, accused the Republicans of turning the nomination process into a 'political football'.

'In a democracy, you have to have at least enough trust to be able to work with each other and solve difficult problems.

'And when the Republicans refuse to give a distinguished judge appointed by President Obama even the courtesy of meetings, let alone a hearing, that sent such a terrible message,' she said, referring to the rejection of Merrick Garland's nomination.

'That Merrick Garland precedent was the crassest most cynical kind of politics that could even be imagined,' Clinton said. 'They're the ones who have turned it into a political football.'

Kavanaugh has strenuously denied Ford's claim and has offered to return to the committee and testify at any time.

Clinton was appearing on the Late Show to promote the paperback release of her book, What Happened?

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