53-year-old Deborah Ramirez, who attended Yale University with Brett Kavanaugh, just accused him of sexual misconduct when he was an 18-year-old freshman.
On Sunday night, The New Yorker’s Ronan Farrow and Jane Mayer published Ramirez’s accusation, which she has asked the FBI to investigate.
According to Ramirez, she was invited to an alcohol-fueled party at a student dormitory in the “Old Campus” area of Yale in 1983, in a suite at the Lawrance Hall building, which houses freshmen. One of the other students at that party was Kavanaugh. While both Ramirez and Kavanaugh were drinking, Ramirez said she remembers the eventual Supreme Court nominee putting his penis in her face, and inadvertently touching it while trying to push him away.
Ramirez admits that the details of the party were hazy because she was drinking, but two details she clearly remembers are Kavanaugh laughing and pulling his pants up after the incident, and a student at the party shouting down the hall, “Brett Kavanaugh just put his penis in Debbie’s face!”
“It was his full name. I don’t think it was just “Brett.” And I remember hearing and being mortified that this was out there,” Deborah Ramirez told the New Yorker.
More importantly, if Ramirez’s account is true, it would mean that Kavanaugh committed perjury before the Senate Judiciary Committee, as he said under oath that, as a legal adult, he had never “committed any verbal or physical harassment or assault of a sexual nature.”
For his part, Kavanaugh adamantly denied the allegation in a written statement to the publication.
“This alleged event from 35 years ago did not happen. The people who knew me then know that this did not happen, and have said so. This is a smear, plain and simple,” he stated. “I look forward to testifying on Thursday about the truth, and defending my good name–and the reputation for character and integrity I have spent a lifetime building–against these last-minute allegations.”
The allegation comes as Kavanaugh is fighting a sexual assault allegation by Dr. Christine Blasey Ford, who said that Kavanaugh once held her down at a drunken high school party when they were teenagers and tried to rip her clothes off as his friend, Mark Judge, turned the music up in order to drown out her screams.
Both Dr. Blasey Ford and Kavanaugh will testify about that allegation before the judiciary committee later this week. It is not yet clear whether or not Deborah Ramirez will testify, though The New Yorker reported that several Senate Democrats are already calling for a full investigation into her accusation.
When reached by phone, The New Yorker’s Jane Mayer declined to comment, directing Grit Post to The New Yorker, which did not immediately respond to an interview request.
Carl Gibson is a politics contributor for Grit Post. His work has previously been published in The Guardian, The Washington Post, The Houston Chronicle, Al-Jazeera America, and NPR, among others. Follow him on Twitter @crgibs or send him an email at carl at gritpost dot com.