Durbin: Senate Republicans And White House Should Allow FBI To Follow The Facts In Investigating Sexual Assault Allegations Against Judge Kavanaugh

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senate Democratic Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL), a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, today called on Senate Republicans and the White House to allow the FBI to follow the facts where they lead and hold off on scheduling a vote on Judge Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination to the Supreme Court until Congress and the American people learn what the FBI uncovers.  In a speech on the Senate floor, Durbin also called out Republicans who have been calling Dr. Blasey Ford’s allegations of sexual assault against Judge Kavanaugh a “smear,” or a calculated and orchestrated political hit.

“I believe Dr. Ford, and I believe what she told us.  And that’s why I’m troubled to hear [Republican] senators come to the floor today and say, ‘Well, you know, we feel that she was mistreated.’  Some of the same senators, including the Majority Leader, who have said that, came to the floor on three successive days last week and dismissed her complaint as a ‘smear,’” Durbin said.  “Even before she had testified, even before they had seen her under oath say what she did, they dismissed this as a ‘smear.’  I don’t think that’s an indication of respect for Dr. Ford to have said that on the floor of the Senate.  And I think that she deserves more, as anyone would who is willing to testify under oath.”

Durbin continued, “I hope that my colleagues on the other side of the aisle who have not declared where they are and how they’ll vote on the Kavanaugh nomination will wait until the FBI investigation is complete, review their findings, and reflect on the very basic question – is Brett Kavanaugh the right person at this moment in history to be given a lifetime appointment to the highest court in the land?”

Video of Durbin’s remarks on the Senate Floor are available here.

Audio of Durbin’s remarks on the Senate Floor are available here.

Last week, Durbin announced his opposition to Judge Kavanaugh.  In the Senate Judiciary Committee hearing last week, Judge Kavanaugh repeatedly refused to call for an independent FBI investigation, in stark contrast to Dr. Christine Blasey Ford, Ms. Deborah Ramirez, and Ms. Julie Swetnick, who have all asked for a FBI investigation of their serious allegations of sexual assault.

In last week’s hearing, Durbin also asked Dr. Christine Blasey Ford, “Dr. Ford, with what degree of certainty do you believe Brett Kavanaugh assaulted you?”  Dr. Blasey Ford responded, “One hundred percent.”

Last week, following the release of a sworn declaration from Julie Swetnick detailing new allegations of sexual assault by Judge Kavanaugh, Durbin called for Senate Republicans and the White House to either immediately call for the FBI to conduct an investigation into the multiple allegations of sexual assault by Judge Kavanaugh or withdraw his nomination.