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Washington is abuzz this weekend over news that will most likely result in learning nothing new about Dr. Christine Ford’s sexual assault allegations against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh.
On Friday, just hours after announcing he would support Kavanaugh’s confirmation, Arizona Sen. Jeff Flake announced he would vote the nomination out of committee but not support it on the Senate floor unless an FBI investigation lasting no more than one week examines Ford’s allegations.
But will the FBI probe accomplish anything more than the Senate Judiciary Committee did in gathering statements from all the supposed witnesses?
“Nothing. They’re going to repeat what the committee has already done,” said former federal prosecutor and Justice Department official Victoria Toensing.
Toensing says the FBI will simply interview the witnesses and write down their responses. Agents will provide no analysis.
“They don’t ever make a decision about whether this person is credible or not credible. They just write down the words they are told and they give it and they give it to the committee then. It’s the committee that decides whether it’s truthful or the allegation is serious or not serious,” said Toensing.
She says this is how the confirmation process is supposed to play out and the Senate Judiciary Committee is supposed to investigate any allegations confidentially. Toensing blasted California Sen. Dianne Feinstein, the top Democrat on the committee, for her handling of Ford’s allegation, including assisting Ford behind the scenes prior to an eleventh hour publicizing of the accusation.
She says Feinstein is being rewarded by Flake for bad behavior.
“What Dianne Feinstein did was outrageous and I’m sorry that she’s getting rewarded for it by getting this extra time but the Republicans didn’t have any choice,” said Toensing, who says Flake’s compromise is just the latest example in how the two parties operate.
“The Republicans just aren’t very good at fighting. They’re not. Democrats know how to kill. Republicans bring a little lasso to the gunfight,” said Toensing.
Toensing says all of this is a ploy from Democrats to delay confirmation, pointing out that for weeks Democrats groused about not getting enough paperwork from Kavanaugh’s background. Now they demand an FBI investigation and already some are publicly wondering whether a week is enough time.
Toensing says we’ll see the same talking points a week from now.
“I predict that next Thursday night or Friday morning, when this week is up, that the Democrats will find reasons to say, ‘We can’t just go ahead now. Look at this.’ They’re going to ask for another postponement. They’re like a drowning person, grabbing for anything just to stay afloat,” said Toensing.