Kavanaugh accuser agrees to give evidence to Senate committee

Mark Wilson  Getty Images North America

But details of the presentation still need to be worked out.

The official claimed it was a "clever way" to continue negotiations "without committing to anything".

If a hearing goes ahead, it would be a high-stakes public confrontation with parallels to the 1991 event when Anita Hill accused now-Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas of sexually harassing her when he was her supervisor at two federal agencies.

Grassley has said the hearing should take place on Wednesday, but Ford said she wanted it on Thursday at the earliest and to be able to call as a witness a man whom she says was present during the assault.

It was not immediately clear whether the Republican-run Senate Judiciary Committee would agree to more talks with Ford's team.

Trump and the White House had been careful not to malign Ford after her allegations surfaced, but Trump dropped the restraint in his tweets on Friday.

The president's comments infuriated Democrats and risked further alienating women voters ahead of the Nov 6 election, in which Democrats have a chance to win control of the House and perhaps the Senate.

Ford's accusations of Kavanaugh's behaviour 35 years ago and the standoff over the terms of her appearance have captivated the nation as the appeals court judge's confirmation hangs in balance.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, speaking at a gathering of evangelical voters in Washington, assured them Kavanaugh would be confirmed.

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How might that have to work? "She's already come forward and it's now Congress" responsibility to order the FBI to investigate. Susan Collins of ME and Jeff Flake of Arizona - said that unless Ford testified Monday they would move on to Kavanagh's vote.

The White House is casting doubt on the willingness of a college professor to speak publicly about her sexual assault allegations against Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh. "Keep the faith, don't get rattled by any of this". But they want to set up a time later Saturday to keep discussing the terms of her appearance.

After several days of maintaining a relatively neutral posture, Trump on Friday declared that Ford could not be believed. Chuck Grassley of Iowa, has given Christine Blasey Ford more time to decide on the terms of her appearance. "We are hopeful that we can reach agreement on details".

The senior member of the opposition Democrats in the Senate, Chuck Schumer, called Trump's logic "a highly offensive misunderstanding of surviving trauma", while Democratic Senator Dianne Feinstein said: "We must treat sexual assault survivors with respect, not bully or try to silence them".

"Five times now we hv granted extension for Dr Ford to decide if she wants to proceed w her desire stated one wk ago that she wants to tell senate her story Dr Ford if u changed ur mind say so so we can move on I want to hear ur testimony".

Kavanaugh's confirmation appears to turn mostly on the support or opposition of three Republican senators: Jeff Flake of Arizona, who is on the Judiciary panel that Republicans control 11-10; Susan Collins of ME, who is pro-choice; and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, who also is pro-choice and comes from a state where the governor and lieutenant governor oppose Kavanaugh's confirmation.

Kavanaugh denies knowledge of any such assault and wants to give his side of the story to the committee. "I remain committed to defending my integrity".

"Judge Brett Kavanaugh is a fine man, with an impeccable reputation, who is under assault by radical left wing politicians who don't want to know the answers, they just want to destroy and delay", Trump wrote.

The vice-president says the way that some Democrats have conducted themselves during the confirmation process "is a disgrace and a disservice to the Senate and the American people".

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