Trump questions credibility of second Kavanaugh accuser

Supreme Court Kavanaugh

President Donald Trump, fighting to shore up his nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to the U.S. Supreme Court in a divided U.S. Senate, on Tuesday called sexual misconduct allegations against the judge "a con game being played by the Democrats".

At that hearing, the panel will hear testimony from Kavanaugh and Christine Blasey Ford, a university professor who has accused him of sexually assaulting her in 1982 when both were high school students in Maryland.

Michael Avenatti, a lawyer who represents a porn star claiming to have had an affair with Trump, has said he is also representing a possible third Kavanaugh accuser, whom he has not identified.

Ford had previously accused Kavanaugh, 53, of pinning her down and groping her in an incident that allegedly took place at a party when they were both in high school.

Instead, bipartisan Judiciary Committee staff will seek to interview Ramirez privately about her allegation, said Senator John Cornyn of Texas, the second-ranking Republican. Trump also called Kavanaugh a "high quality person" and argued that Democrats are "playing a con game". Now that these sexual assault allegations have surfaced, it is up to the Senate to decide whether Kavanaugh will still be appointed to the Supreme Court. He said he'd never done anything like the episodes his accusers have described and said he didn't have sexual intercourse until "many years" after high school. "I will not be intimidated into withdrawing from this process".

"Gee, let's not make him a Supreme Court judge", Trump continued.

"I go into the hearings with very positive feelings about him, and I hope Thursday goes well", Corker told reporters. He says McConnell has done more than maybe anyone else to politicize the Supreme Court nomination process.

Ramirez, who told The New Yorker that she'd been drinking at the time, was initially reluctant to speak publicly "partly because her memories contained gaps", the magazine said.

Kavanaugh appears resolute about his desire to be confirmed to the nation's highest court.

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She added, "as a former prosecutor, I think you have to at least get the facts down".

The new accusation in a report from The New Yorker came just a few hours after negotiators had reached an agreement to hold an extraordinary public hearing on Thursday for Mr Kavanaugh and Ms Blasey Ford.

Ashley Kavanaugh was the personal secretary to President George W. Bush when Brett Kavanaugh worked in the White House. "I mean charges come up from 36 years ago that are totally unsubstantiated". Bob Corker is questioning the credibility of the latest allegation by Ramirez.

"The second accuser has nothing", Trump said of Deborah Ramirez, who has accused Kavanaugh of exposing himself to her at a party when they were freshmen at Yale University. Mitch McConnell, R-KY, the majority leader, said on Monday.

Trump made clear that he expects the Republican-controlled Senate to stick by Kavanaugh, who he said was being smeared by his Democratic opponents.

With his future and reputation on the line, Kavanaugh stepped up his counterattack with a statement denouncing a "last minute character assassination" aimed at forcing him to stand aside. "They know it's a con game", he said.

A spokesman for McConnell said that his office was not aware of the allegations before Sunday evening - and that specifically, Senate Democrats did not inform Republicans about the accusation.

He said of Kavanaugh, "This is a high quality person, and it would be a awful insult to our country if this doesn't happen".

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