Dem senator praises Ford opening the door to testifying

Sen. Patrick LeahyPatrick Joseph LeahyPoll: McConnell is most unpopular senator Democrats grill USDA official on relocation plans that gut research staff Lawmakers pay tribute to late Justice Stevens MORE (D-Vt.) on Thursday praised Christine Blasey Ford for opening the door to testifying next week on her allegations against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh.

“I just heard she's offered to come, I think that is a good thing," Leahy, a senior member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, told Hill.TV.

Ford's lawyer said in an email to the Senate panel on Thursday that she would be open to testifying next week under "terms that are fair and which ensure her safety.”

Republicans have pushed for Ford to appear for a hearing on Monday. Her lawyer told the committee that an appearance on Monday "is not possible," adding "the committee’s insistence that it occur then is arbitrary in any event.” 

Leahy pushed back on GOP efforts to speak with Ford as soon as possible, accusing Republicans of "trying to rush this through so fast." 

The Democratic senator pushed back when pressed on Sen. Dianne FeinsteinDianne Emiel FeinsteinTop Democrats demand security assessment of Trump properties Democrats warm to idea of studying reparations Hillicon Valley: Senators unload on Facebook cryptocurrency plan | Trump vows to 'take a look' at Google's ties to China | Google denies working with China's military | Tech execs on defensive at antitrust hearing | Bill would bar business with Huawei MORE's (D-Calif.) decision to hold onto a letter from Ford for weeks before it was eventually reported in the press. 

“Come on, come on,” Leahy said.

“We've never had a time when it's been rushed like this and they know it, these are the same people that held up an Obama nominee for over a year – for one who would have won easily, Merrick GarlandMerrick Brian GarlandDem senators demand GOP judicial group discloses donors John Legend: Republicans play to win, Biden plays to impress the media Biden says he opposes expanding the Supreme Court MORE ... the double standard comes back to the same question – what are they trying to hide?” he said. 

Ford has accused Kavanaugh of pinning her down and trying to remove her clothes during a party in the 1980s when both were in high school. Kavanaugh has strongly denied the allegations. 


–– Molly Hooper