House conservatives want ethics probe into Dems' handling of Kavanaugh allegations

House conservatives want ethics probe into Dems' handling of Kavanaugh allegations
© Anna Moneymaker

A group of House conservatives is pushing the House and Senate Ethics committees to launch investigations into Sen. Dianne FeinsteinDianne Emiel FeinsteinHouse passes bipartisan bill to create women's history museum Democrats bullish on bill to create women's history museum: 'It's an election year' What the impeachment vote looked like from inside the chamber MORE’s (D-Calif.) handling of Christine Blasey Ford’s letter detailing her sexual assault allegations against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh.

In letters sent to Sens. Johnny IsaksonJohnny IsaksonProgressive group backs Senate candidates in Georgia, Iowa Overnight Health Care: Trump budget calls for cutting Medicaid, ACA by T | Trump proposes removing FDA authority over tobacco | Lawmakers frustrated by lack of emergency funds for coronavirus Anti-abortion group backs Loeffler's election campaign after opposing her Senate appointment MORE (R-Ga.) and Christopher CoonsChristopher (Chris) Andrew CoonsDemocrats fear rule of law crumbling under Trump McConnell displays mastery of Senate with impeachment victory Senate drama surrounding Trump trial starts to fizzle MORE (D-Del.) and Reps. Susan BrooksSusan Wiant BrooksThe rise of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez in 2019 Hispanic Democrats endorse Latina for open Indiana seat Trump shocks, earns GOP rebukes with Dingell remarks MORE (R-Ind.) and Ted DeutchTheodore (Ted) Eliot DeutchFather of Parkland shooting victim calls on Congress to take action Florida 'red flag' law has removed hundreds of guns: report The Hill's Campaign Report: Rising Klobuchar, Buttigieg face test in diverse states MORE (D-Fla.) — the chairs and ranking members of their respective panels — the lawmakers argued it’s pivotal they find out how Ford’s confidential letter was leaked and why it was hidden from the majority staff of the Senate Judiciary Committee.

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“Dr. Ford testified that she delivered a letter to Rep. Eshoo who forwarded it to Senator Feinstein on July 30, 2018 detailing allegations against Judge Brett Kavanaugh,” the letter reads. “In that letter, Dr. Ford asked that her identity remain confidential. The next day, Senator Feinstein confirmed that she would not share Dr. Ford’s letter without her explicit consent. On September 12, 2018, The Intercept reported on the existence of the letter – a fact that was known only to Dr. Ford, Representative Eshoo, and Senator Feinstein. On September 13, 2018, Senator Feinstein referred the letter to the FBI.”

The group, led by Rep. Andy Biggs (R-Ariz.), noted Feinstein said she didn’t disclose Ford’s letter to Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck GrassleyCharles (Chuck) Ernest GrassleyOvernight Health Care: Nevada union won't endorse before caucuses after 'Medicare for All' scrap | McConnell tees up votes on two abortion bills | CDC confirms 15th US coronavirus case Mnuchin defends Treasury regulations on GOP tax law Wyden, Mnuchin clash over Trump tax returns, Hunter Biden probe MORE (R-Iowa) because Ford requested it remain private.

“Leaking Dr. Ford’s letter was a cynically political act that is damaging to the credibility of the United States Congress. Deliberately outing Dr. Ford without her consent may have a lasting impact on women’s willingness to report future assaults,” they continued.

“Democratic members of Congress and their staffs placed political expediency above the wishes of Dr. Ford. For these reasons, I am calling for an immediate ethics investigation to identify the individuals who are responsible for this breach and take appropriate action.”

In addition to Biggs, GOP Reps. Steve KingSteven (Steve) Arnold KingMother of child in viral meme sends Steve King cease-and-desist for using image in fundraising Nebraska Democratic Party Chair: Rural vote should be 'bedrock' of party With surge in anti-Semitism, political leaders need to be aggressive and reflective in response MORE (Iowa), Jeff DuncanJeffrey (Jeff) Darren DuncanHouse Republicans add Jordan to Intel panel for impeachment probe House votes to block drilling in Arctic refuge Overnight Energy: House moves to block Trump drilling | House GOP rolls out proposal to counter offshore drilling ban | calls mount for NOAA probe MORE (S.C.), Bob GibbsRobert (Bob) Brian GibbsHouse conservatives want ethics probe into Dems' handling of Kavanaugh allegations Judge rules against Trump attempt to delay Obama water rule House Dems add five candidates to ‘Red to Blue’ program MORE (Ohio), Ralph NormanRalph Warren NormanHotel industry mounts attack on Airbnb with House bill GOP lawmakers call for provisions barring DOD funds for border wall to be dropped Conservatives call on Pelosi to cancel August recess MORE (S.C.), Rod Blum (Iowa) and Louie GohmertLouis (Louie) Buller GohmertHouse Natural Resources gives Grijalva power to subpoena Interior Republicans eye top spot on Natural Resources panel Sheila Jackson Lee tops colleagues in House floor speaking days over past decade MORE (Texas) signed on to the letter.

Republicans in both chambers have been highly critical of Democrats handling of the allegations, arguing Democrats withheld the information until the eleventh hour.

A Senate vote on Kavanaugh's confirmation has been delayed by one week while the FBI investigates sexual misconduct allegations leveled against him by Ford and other women. 

He has denied all the accusations.