Feinstein’s Decision to Withhold Kavanaugh Allegations Is ‘Politically Motivated’
Mercedes Schlapp, WH strategic communications director, slammed the senator for 'last-minute' decision to air allegations
White House Director of Strategic Communications Mercedes Schlapp (shown above left) ripped Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif., above right) on Tuesday for her “politically motivated” decision to withhold publicly the sexual assault allegation against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh until the 11th hour of his Senate confirmation process.
“When you look at the fact that the Democrats pushed this through — Sen. Feinstein pushed this through — in the very last minute, [on] the eve of the committee vote … you know she has had this letter since July, and Sen. Feinstein met with Brett Kavanaugh [and] never even brought up the issue,” Schlapp said during an interview on Fox News’ “America’s Newsroom.”
“They had a closed committee meeting where you would address sensitive topics. Never brought up. And then they submitted over 1,000 written questions to Brett Kavanaugh. None of them included this allegation,” Schlapp added.
“And now, all of a sudden at the last minute, Sen. Feinstein is coming forth with this letter? It’s just incredibly disturbing.”
When asked if she believed this was “politically motivated,” Schlapp replied, “Absolutely.”
President Donald Trump nominated Kavanaugh to replace the outgoing Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy in July. But it wasn’t until Sunday that Christine Blasey Ford publicly came forward via an article published in The Washington Post, claiming that Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her 36 years ago, at a party in Maryland when they were teens in high school.
Ford, a psychology professor at Palo Alto University in northern California, derailed the traditional Senate confirmation process when she came forward publicly after her anonymous allegation was leaked last week.
Ford detailed her allegation to Feinstein through her congresswoman, Rep. Anna G. Eshoo (D-Calif.), in July.
Feinstein faced criticism for her decision not to air Ford’s anonymous allegations until so late in the confirmation process. The Senate Judiciary Committee initially was scheduled to vote on Kavanaugh’s nomination Thursday before sending the vote to the full Senate shortly thereafter.
But Kavanaugh and Ford are now apparently testifying publicly on September 24.
Kavanaugh has “categorically and unequivocally” denied Ford’s accusations, saying he has “never done anything like what the accuser describes — to her or to anyone.”
“I can tell you Judge Kavanaugh is ready to speak today. He wants to be able to clear his name. He is being forthcoming and making sure that he is able to talk about this completely false allegation,” Schlapp said as she blasted “the last-minute effort by the Democrats to stall the vote” and “to basically try to smear Judge Kavanaugh’s reputation.”
“And it’s just a shame the Democrats have decided to put a halt in this process and not just let the vote go through,” Schlapp added.
“Again, I think the Democrats from day one have made it very clear that they are not going to support Judge Kavanaugh … they’re attempting to smear his reputation.”
Ultimately, Schlapp said that Trump and other White House officials “do believe that the process has to go through” as Ford’s allegation and Kavanaugh’s defense are heard and weighed.
Trump told reporters on Tuesday at the White House that “it’s frankly a terrible thing that this information wasn’t given to us a long time ago, months ago when they got it.”
“They could’ve done that instead of waiting until everything was finished and then all of a sudden spring it,” Trump added.
“But that’s with the Democrats do. That’s what they do. It’s obstruction, resist, it’s whatever you have to do.”
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