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Kavanaugh refuses 19 requests to commit to an FBI investigation

Brett Kavanaugh says he’s innocent and ‘welcomes anything’ that could prove it. So why is he refusing to support an FBI investigation?

By Caroline Orr - September 27, 2018
Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh

Despite insisting on his innocence, Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh refused at least 19 times on Thursday to call for an FBI investigation into the credible allegations of sexual assault that have been brought against him by multiple women.

During his testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee, Kavanaugh repeatedly denied the accusations that he sexually assaulted several different women during high school and college, saying he “would welcome anything” to prove his innocence.

But when asked if he would welcome an FBI investigation into the matter, Kavanaugh changed his tune.

On at least 19 occasions, Kavanaugh was asked to commit to calling for the FBI to reopen its background investigation and look into the claims of sexual assault that have emerged in recent days and weeks.

And at least 19 times, he refused.

Among those who tried to get Kavanaugh to agree to an FBI investigation was Sen. Dick Durbin, who pointed out that “if there is no truth to [Dr. Christine Blasey Ford’s] charges, the FBI investigation will show that.”

“Are you afraid that they might not?” Durbin asked him, adding, “Why would you resist that kind of investigation?”

Kavanaugh dodged the question, repeatedly saying “I’m innocent” and complaining about the allegations being “sprung on him.”

When pressed on whether he would “support an FBI investigation right now,” Kavanaugh once again pivoted away from the question and failed to give an answer.

A similar exchange followed with Sen. Kamala Harris, who asked Kavanaugh, “Are you willing to ask the White House to authorize the FBI to investigate the claims that have been made against you?”

Kavanaugh once again refused to comply, saying, “The witness testimony is before you. No witness who was there supports that I was there.”

“I’m going to take that as a ‘no’ and we can move on,” Harris replied.

At least five other senators — Dianne Feinstein, Patrick Leahy, Amy Klobuchar, Richard Blumenthal, and Chris Coons — asked Kavanaugh if he would call for the FBI to look into the allegations, with many of them giving him multiple opportunities to say yes.

But despite his insistence that he is innocent, Kavanaugh doesn’t seem so confident that the FBI would reach the same conclusion.

This stands in stark to contrast to his first accuser, Dr. Christine Blasey Ford, who has explicitly called for the FBI to investigate her allegations.

This type of investigation would be routine for the FBI, which conducts background investigations on certain government employees, including potential Supreme Court justices. As part of that process, the bureau is charged with investigating specific claims of wrongdoing and other derogatory information.

By the time Ford’s accusations emerged publicly, the FBI had already completed its background investigation into Kavanaugh, but a former agent said it wouldn’t be unusual to reopen the investigation in light of the new information.

But because this is a background investigation and not a criminal one, the FBI cannot move forward without a specific request to open a probe.

In this case, the request must come from Trump, since he nominated Kavanaugh.

Thus far, the White House has said that it is not willing to make such a request, and Senate Republicans aren’t pushing the matter. And as Kavanaugh made clear today, he’s not going to call for an investigation, either, despite his repeated claims that the allegations aren’t true.

All of this, of course, leads to one simple question: If he really is innocent, and if Republicans believe it, why don’t they want the FBI look at the evidence that could prove it?

The simple answer, of course, is that they’re afraid of what the FBI might find — so afraid, apparently, that they’re willing to engage in a cover-up just to ensure that the truth stays hidden long enough to install Kavanaugh to a lifetime position on the highest court in the nation.

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.

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