Flake defends call for Kavanaugh delay: ‘We’re coming apart at the seams’

A full Senate vote is expected next week

A full Senate vote is expected next week

"The FBI, this is what they do". In 2018, after a year of sparring with Trump, they're looking for payback, and they're not exactly particular about how they get it.

Evangelical leaders in contact with the White House have quietly launched an influence campaign created to rally 1.5 million evangelical voters behind Kavanaugh across five key states: Missouri, Indiana, West Virginia, Florida and North Dakota.

Trump bowed to pressure from moderate Senate Republicans and ordered an FBI investigation after Christine Blasey Ford, a California university professor, detailed her claims at a Senate hearing on Thursday that Kavanaugh tried to rape her in 1982 when the two were high school teenagers. Jeff Flake in a Capitol elevator Friday said she hopes other Republican senators listen to the stories of women who have been sexually assaulted. The Judiciary Committee has said the probe should be limited to "current credible allegations" against Kavanaugh and be finished by next Friday.

The move followed emotional testimony from Ford and Kavanaugh at a committee hearing on Thursday that further roiled emotions and outrage surrounding the nomination for a lifetime appointment to the high court.

The move will also delay the contentious confirmation process by a week. "One, the Supreme Court is the lone institution where most Americans still have some faith".

Kavanaugh's childhood friend Mark Judge, who Ford says was in the room at the time of the incident, has agreed to cooperate with investigators.

News reported on Saturday that the White House had constrained the FBI investigation by limiting its parameters. "You see what's happening right now", Trump said. "Please correct your reporting!" he wrote on Twitter.

On Friday, Flake told reporters that he had very much "wanted to support" Kavanaugh, but he also wanted a "process we can be proud of".

Earlier Friday, the Senate committee voted in support of the nomination of Kavanaugh.

Ramirez came forward earlier this month to say that Kavanaugh, who has been tapped by President Donald Trump to sit on the Supreme Court, thrust his genitals in her face in the early 1980s when they were at a dorm party at Yale University where they both attended school.




Agents also will likely pursue P.J. Smyth and Leland Ingham Keyser, who Ford said also attended the party.

Judge has said he would "cooperate with any law enforcement agency that is assigned to confidentially investigate these allegations". "They are just compiling the investigation and reporting on it".

The Kavanaugh nomination has turned into a political firestorm ahead of November congressional elections - in which Republicans will battle to keep control of Congress - and is threatening to derail Trump's push to get a conservative-minded majority on the top court ahead of the vote.

A senior administration official told the Times that Don McGahn was leading the White House effort to help direct the scope of the background check.

Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., pressed Saturday for an even broader investigation, writing in a letter to the chairman of the Judiciary Committee that the FBI should examine whether Kavanaugh lied to senators during his testimony.

The Washington Post first reported that the Federal Bureau of Investigation has contacted Ramirez. "I just want this conducted in a fair way".

The new investigation by the FBI is a limited background check of Kavanaugh, not a full-fledged criminal inquiry.

Conway told CNN's "State of the Union" that she was only aware of the parameters the Senate set on the probe.

"The White House counsel has allowed the Senate to dictate what these terms look like and what the scope of the investigation is", she said on "Fox News Sunday".

"We have not heard anything from the FBI, and with each passing hour, I'm growing increasingly concerned that this is a sham of an investigation".

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