GOP threatens Monday vote on Kavanaugh unless accuser testifies

Brett Kavanaugh on the right in his high school yearbook

The woman whose sexual assault allegation threatens to bring down Donald Trump's Supreme Court nominee rejected an ultimatum Friday, September 21 for testifying in the Senate after the United States president turned against her, claiming her accusation could not be true. Since then, her lawyers and committee staff have been negotiating the conditions of her testimony.

The Senate Judiciary Committee has scheduled a hearing for Monday and had invited Kavanaugh and Ford to testify.

A statement by Ford's lawyers carried by CNN asked for one more day to respond, calling the deadline "arbitrary".

Earlier on Friday, Republican Senator Susan Collins of ME, who is considered on the fence for Kavanaugh's confirmation vote, said she was "appalled" by Trump's tweet calling Ford's story into question.

Politico said Republican members of the Judiciary Committee held a conference call Friday morning to discuss how to respond to Ford's requests.

"Women from every phase of Judge Kavanaugh's life, those who know him best, have stepped forward to say that the allegation being leveled against him is false and we are proud to stand with Brett", Fagen said.

-She does not want Kavanaugh in the room when she testifies.

McConnell has wanted to whisk Kavanaugh to confirmation before the court's new term starts October 1 - and before November's elections.

Yet even before Trump's outburst, the party discipline on Kavanaugh's accuser was cracking.

Ms Katz said of her client: "She's been receiving death threats which have been reported to the Federal Bureau of Investigation and she and her family have been forced out of their home".

Ford's legal team has said she strongly prefers that her allegations are fully investigated before she testifies.

Kavanaugh, who has denied Ford's allegation, was seen as all but assured to ascend to the Supreme Court until Ford's claim against him was made public.

"I have no doubt that, if the attack on Dr. Ford was as bad as she says, charges would have been immediately filed with local Law Enforcement Authorities by either her or her loving parents", Trump tweeted.

Acknowledging the tumult Ford's accusation has caused, McConnell said at the Values Voter Summit, "Keep the faith, don't get rattled by it".

Christine Blasey (BLAH'-zee) Ford may testify against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh after all. That means asking questions of a nominee for the Supreme Court who has been credibly accused of sexual assault. "I never told anyone for decades", she wrote in the op-ed. "I say, let her say what she has to say". 'I ask that she bring those filings forward so that we can learn date, time, and place!'

"Perhaps the aging men who are poised to interrogate her, unless they hide behind surrogates, should pause for a moment and think about the courage it takes for a woman to say: Here is my memory".

Republican lawmakers are trying to win Senate confirmation for Kavanaugh ahead of the court's start of a new term on October 1, or if not by then, ahead of the November 6 nationwide congressional elections, to show Republican voters they have made good on campaign promises to place conservative judges like Kavanaugh on the Supreme Court.

Christine Blasey Ford, a professor who is now known as Mr Kavanaugh's accuser, has firmly entered the fray.

Inside the Senate, split 51-49, only six Republicans are women. We believe this will allow for informed questioning, will generate the most insightful testimony, and will help de-politicize the hearing. Before the 2016 presidential election, more than a dozen women accused Trump of making unwanted advances.

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