All Senate Judiciary Democrats Formally Ask for Delay to Kavanaugh Vote

Combined with Republican panel member Jeff Flake, panel could entertain postponement

Senate Judiciary Committee Democrats have formally asked Judiciary Chairman Charles E. Grassley, R-Iowa, to delay a panel vote on Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

All 10 Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee on Monday formally asked for a delay in the confirmation vote of Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, which, taken together with similar calls by one of the committee Republicans, Arizona’s Jeff Flake, add to the face-off between the judge and the woman accusing him of sexual assault, Christine Blasey Ford.

“We write to ask that you delay the vote on Judge Kavanaugh’s nomination as Associate Justice of the Supreme Court. There are serious questions about Judge Kavanaugh’s record, truthfulness, and character. The Committee should not move forward until all of these questions have been thoroughly evaluated and answered,” the Democrats wrote in a letter to Judiciary Committee Chairman Charles E. Grassley, R-Iowa.

The panel has an 11-10 party breakdown, meaning if there is a Republican who acts contrary to leadership’s initial plan and schedule, it could spell trouble for the nominee.  

“As you are aware, Dr. Ford’s serious allegations were submitted to the FBI for investigation last week. Now that her story is public, it is even more important that we give the Bureau the time it needs to follow up. All Senators, regardless of party, should insist the FBI perform its due diligence and fully investigate the allegations as part of its review of Judge Kavanaugh’s background,” the continued. 

The committee was scheduled to vote on Kavanaugh’s confirmation on Thursday, but with both the judge and his accuser stating they are willing to testify about the allegations, that plan might be altered. 

The Senate is set to reconvene at 2 p.m. today and at that time Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., could give an indication of whether there will be changes to the initial schedule

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