Flake: My office received call saying my family would be 'taken out' over Kavanaugh stance

Flake: My office received call saying my family would be 'taken out' over Kavanaugh stance
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GOP Sen. Jeff FlakeJeffrey (Jeff) Lane FlakeTrump's GOP impeachment firewall holds strong How to survive an impeachment Are Senate Republicans certain that Trump can return to office? MORE (Ariz.) said on Wednesday that his office received a call saying that he and his family "would be 'taken out' " over his rhetoric on Brett Kavanaugh's Supreme Court nomination.

Flake recounted from the Senate floor how he told Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck GrassleyCharles (Chuck) Ernest GrassleyState cites 38 people for violations in Clinton email review Lawmakers from both sides of the aisle mourn Cummings GOP cautions Graham against hauling Biden before Senate MORE (R-Iowa) that he didn’t think the Senate should proceed with the confirmation process until Christine Blasey Ford, who has accused Kavanaugh of sexual assault, was given the opportunity to testify.

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“Not everybody felt that way," Flake said. "One man, somewhere in the country, called my office in Arizona and left a message saying that he was tired of me ‘interrupting our president’ and that for the offense of allowing Dr. Ford to be heard, for this offense, me and my family would be ‘taken out.’” 

Flake is the latest senator to say that their office has received threats over Kavanaugh’s nomination. Spokespeople for Sens. Susan CollinsSusan Margaret CollinsOvernight Energy: Perry to step down as Energy secretary | Future of big-game hunting council up in the air | Dems lose vote against EPA power plant rule Overnight Defense — Presented by Boeing — Pence says Turkey agrees to ceasefire | Senators vow to move forward with Turkey sanctions | Mulvaney walks back comments tying Ukraine aid to 2016 probe On The Money: Senate fails to override Trump veto over border emergency | Trump resort to host G-7 next year | Senators to push Turkey sanctions despite ceasefire | McConnell tees up funding votes MORE (R-Maine) and Dianne FeinsteinDianne Emiel FeinsteinSchiff should consider using RICO framework to organize impeachment We need answers to questions mainstream media won't ask about Democrats The Hill's Morning Report - Trump grapples with Syria fallout MORE (D-Calif.) have also talked about how they have received “vulgar” and threatening calls and mail.

Collins is one of the few senators who remains publicly undecided on Kavanaugh. Feinstein is the top Democrat on the Judiciary Committee.

Flake, who chose not to seek reelection this year, blamed the current political climate for calls like the one he said his office received.

“I mention this with reluctance, but only to say that we have lit a match, my colleagues. The question is, do we appreciate how close the powder keg is?” he asked.

Flake also used his speech to defend Ford and Kavanaugh against attacks being lobbed from both sides.

He said Ford wasn’t trying to “smear” Kavanaugh. Republicans, including Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellMcConnell: Trump's troop pull back in Syria a 'grave strategic mistake' Overnight Defense — Presented by Boeing — Trump insists Turkey wants cease-fire | Fighting continues in Syrian town | Pentagon chief headed to Mideast | Mattis responds to criticism from Trump TSA head rules himself out for top DHS job   MORE (R-Ky.), have accused Democrats of using Ford’s allegation to run a “smear campaign” against his nomination.

“What I do know is that I don’t believe that Dr. Ford is part of some kind of vast conspiracy from start to finish to smear Judge Kavanaugh, as has been alleged by some on the right,” Flake said. “And what I do know is that I don’t believe that Judge Kavanaugh is some kind of serial sexual predator, as has been alleged by some on the left."