POLITICS
09/26/2018 07:50 am ET

Judiciary Committee Republicans Are Dodging Deborah Ramirez, Attorney Says

"Feels like there's a lot of game-playing" by GOP senators, said the lawyer representing a woman who has accused Brett Kavanaugh of sexual assault.

Senate Judiciary Committee Republicans have rejected efforts by Deborah Ramirez’s representatives to present her sexual assault claim against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, her lawyer said.

Committee leaders, rushing toward a scheduled Friday vote on Kavanaugh’s nomination, have canceled scheduled phone calls and changed demands for allowing Ramirez to tell her story, attorney John Clune tweeted on Tuesday. 

“We reached out to the Senate Judiciary Committee to schedule a call to discuss how best to bring them that information and they have refused to meet all scheduled appointments,” Clune wrote in the tweet. “We have officially requested an FBI investigation and our client remains adamant that is the appropriate venue for her to discuss her trauma.”

Ramirez, a classmate of Kavanaugh’s at Yale University, has accused Kavanaugh of shoving his penis in her face at a party when they were undergraduates. She came forward a week after Christine Blasey Ford, a California psychologist, accused Kavanaugh of groping her, trying to undress her and covering her mouth with his hand when they were in high school.

Clune told CNN that a scheduled phone call with the Judiciary Committee was canceled because “they sent us an email saying for a condition for us to even have the phone call, you need to give us a list of all the evidence that you have and break it down for us before we’ll even talk to you by the phone.” 

A call finally took place Tuesday evening, but only Democratic members of the committee were present, Clune said. 

“So, feels like there’s a lot of game-playing that’s going on right now by the majority party,” said the lawyer. “Every time we try to set up a phone call, the majority party either changes the rules of the phone call or they want additional information as a condition of even having a phone call with us.”

Ramirez and Blasey both have asked for an FBI investigation into their stories. GOP leaders have refused the requests.

Ramirez might be willing to testify to the Judiciary Committee even if there isn’t an FBI probe, Clune said on NBC’s “Today” show on Wednesday.

“That’s a decision I’ll certainly let her make … but it wouldn’t surprise me if she would agree to do that,” the lawyer said.

Kavanaugh has steadastly denied the assault allegations, and says the women’s stories are part of a smear campaign.

President Donald Trump has blamed Democrats for playing a “high level CON GAME” and attempting to destroy Kavanaugh’s reputation.

Blasey is scheduled to testify at a Judiciary Committee public hearing on Thursday. Republicans have scheduled a committee vote on Kavanaugh’s nomination for Friday.

 
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