On Tuesday, the FBI announced it would soon end its ongoing sexual assault probe into Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh. But the investigation appears to only be half-over.
Republicans largely resisted calls to re-open the FBI’s background check 0f Kavanaugh in light of sexual misconduct allegations from three women who publicly came forward after Kavanaugh’s initial confirmation hearings. However, Senator Jeff Flake (R-Arizona) passed Kavanaugh out of the Senate Judiciary Committee last Friday on the condition that the FBI would conduct a thorough probe.
Reports of the investigation’s process have been conflicting, to say the least. After the Washington Post reported that the Trump administration was limiting the scope of the new probe, the New York Times reported that Trump instructed the FBI to allow the investigation to interview anyone and everyone deemed as a critical witness.
By the Times‘ count, there have been four witnesses interviewed in the FBI’s sexual assault probe — Kavanaugh’s friend Mark Judge, whom Christine Blasey Ford testified was present at the party where Kavanaugh allegedly sexually assaulted her, along with other party guests Patrick “P.J.” Smyth and Leland Keyser. Deborah Ramirez, who accused Kavanaugh of sexual misconduct when the two attended Yale University.
However, Bloomberg reported Tuesday that attorneys for both Dr. Ford and Julie Swetnick — who said Kavanaugh was present at a party where she was drugged and gang-raped — say their clients have not yet been contacted for an interview by the FBI.
“It is inconceivable that the FBI could conduct a thorough investigation of Dr. Ford’s allegations without interviewing her, Judge Kavanaugh, or the witnesses we have identified in our letters to you,” Ford’s attorneys, Debra Katz and Michael Bromwich, wrote in a letter to FBI director Christopher Wray.
“We have great concern that the FBI is not conducting — or not being permitted to conduct — a serious investigation,” Deborah Ramirez’s lawyer, John Clune, tweeted.
The New York Times reported that, aside from not interviewing Dr. Ford, Swetnick, or Kavanaugh, the FBI has also not interviewed Kavanaugh’s Yale classmates who remember seeing him get highly intoxicated at parties, Georgetown prep classmates, and/or Mark Judge’s former girlfriend, Elizabeth Rasor, who says Judge once told her ashamedly that he and his friends once raped a woman while she was too drunk to give consent.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky) has stated he intends to have the final confirmation vote on Kavanaugh by the end of the week, and the FBI has stated its probe may be completed and its final report submitted to Congress by as early as Wednesday.
Jake Shepherd is a freelance writer from Cleveland, Ohio. He enjoys poring through financial disclosure statements, spirited debate, and good scotch. He remains eternally optimistic about the Browns. Email him at jake.d.shepherd.21 (at) hotmail (dot) com.