Updated 10:40 a.m.
Christine Blasey Ford, who alleges Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her decades ago in their high school years, is willing to testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee, her lawyers said Monday.
Debra Katz, the Washington civil rights attorney and an attorney for Ford, said no one from the Senate Judiciary Committee has asked Ford to testify.
“My client will do whatever is necessary to make sure that the Senate Judiciary Committee has the full story and the full set of allegations to allow them to make a fully informed decision,” Katz, of Washington’s Katz, Marshall & Banks, said on the news program “CBS This Morning.” “She’s willing to do what she needs to do. She’s willing, hopefully, to tell her story in a manner that is a fair proceeding.”
Some Senate Republicans are working toward arranging phone conversations with Ford and Kavanaugh, but the news that Ford is willing to testify publicly might make that option more difficult.
Debra Katz, the lawyer of Brett Kavanaugh's accuser, says her client is "willing to do what she needs to do" before the Senate Judiciary Committee as Republicans prepare to grill her over sexual misconduct allegations against the Supreme Court nominee. https://t.co/OEeVP7B0Rs pic.twitter.com/4LVctXpJoE
— CBS News (@CBSNews) September 17, 2018
Katz said Monday on CNN: “We’ve heard from no one. We’ve seen various statements made on television—statements that are being bandied about for political reasons. But no one’s asked her.”
Another lawyer for Ford, Lisa Banks, also at the firm Katz, Marshall & Banks, told NPR, “She will agree to participate in any proceedings that she’s asked to participate in.” She also said that Ford’s recollections of the assault were “crystal clear.”
Kavanaugh said in a statement Monday:
“This is a completely false allegation. I have never done anything like what the accuser describes—to her or to anyone.
“Because this never happened, I had no idea who was making this accusation until she identified herself yesterday.
“I am willing to talk to the Senate Judiciary Committee in any way the Committee deems appropriate to refute this false allegation, from 36 years ago, and defend my integrity.”
Ford, a Palo Alto professor, spoke publicly to The Washington Post in an interview published online Sunday. The claims—that Kavanaugh, then 17, pinned her to a bed at a party and covered her mouth—roiled the confirmation process just days before a scheduled committee vote. Kavanaugh, a judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, was deemed likely to be confirmed.
Kavanaugh has not publicly addressed the allegations against him. Kavanaugh’s backers have pointed to many letters published in recent weeks—as part of the confirmation process—touting Kavanaugh’s advocacy for women. Those letters include statements from his former female clerks, praised Kavanaugh for helping end disparities and hardships for women in the law.
Ford first made her claims against Kavanaugh in a letter to her congresswoman. That letter was later transmitted to Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-California, the ranking members on the Senate Judiciary Committee. Ford asked that she remain anonymous and that her claims be kept confidential.
The first public hint of the controversy came in a report at the Intercept last week that Feinstein was keeping a letter from other members of the Judiciary Committee. In aftermath of that reporting, Ford’s claims would be revealed by The New Yorker.
“There was a great deal of ambivalence about whether she wanted to be publicly associated with these allegations,” Katz said Monday. “Essentially that choice was made by her to remain confidential. She asked Sen. Feinstein to keep her letter and her allegations confidential, and Feinstein agreed to do that.”
Katz said some news reporters, aware of Ford’s identity, reached out in person to talk with her and emailed and called her. “She knew that her allegations were going to be outed, and that in fact is what occurred,” Katz said Monday. “As a result, she decided to take control of this to tell this in her own voice.”
This report was updated to include Kavanaugh’s statement Monday.