Just as the Senate Judiciary Committee prepares to vote on Judge Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination to the U.S. Supreme Court, the panel’s ranking member, Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., has announced she has “received information from an individual concerning the nomination” that she has referred to federal investigative authorities.
The New York Times is citing two unnamed officials familiar with the matter who say Feinstein has a letter about possible sexual misconduct between Kavanaugh and a woman when they were both in high school.
The Times also reported Feinstein received the letter “this summer,” meaning it may have been held until the last minute for maximum impact.
“I have received information from an individual concerning the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court,” Feinstein said in a statement, according to The Intercept.
“That individual strongly requested confidentiality, declined to come forward or press the matter further, and I have honored that decision. I have, however, referred the matter to federal investigative authorities,” the senator said.
White House spokeswoman Kerri Kupec said the “11th hour attempt to delay” Kavanaugh’s confirmation is Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., “delivering” on his vow to “oppose Judge Kavanaugh’s nomination with everything I have.”
“Throughout his confirmation process, Judge Kavanaugh has had 65 meetings with senators — including with Senator Feinstein — sat through over 30 hours of testimony, addressed over 2,000 questions in a public setting and additional questions in a confidential session. Not until the eve of his confirmation has Sen. Feinstein or anyone raised the specter of new ‘information’ about him,” Kupec said in the statement,” she said.
“Throughout 25 years of public service, the Federal Bureau of Investigation has thoroughly and repeatedly vetted Judge Kavanaugh, dating back to 1993, for some of the most highly sensitive roles. He has served in the Office of Independent Counsel, the White House, and on the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals, all before his nomination earlier this year to serve as Associate Justice on the Supreme Court.”
The Intercept said, according to multiple sources, Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee have privately requested to see the letter, but Feinstein has refused.
The senator’s refusal to share the letter, which is from a California constituent, has created tension on the committee, The Intercept said.
The woman who is the subject of the letter, The Intercept said, is now being represented by Debra Katz, a whistleblower attorney who works with #MeToo survivors.