Hirono doesn't say whether she finds third Kavanaugh accuser's allegations credible

Hawaii Sen. Maizie Hirono (D) on Thursday refused to say whether she thinks Julie Swetnick, the third woman to publicly accuse Brett Kavanaugh of sexual misconduct, has put forth a credible allegation against the Supreme Court nominee.

In an interview on CNN, Hirono refused to answer questions about whether she believed Swetnick, and instead repeated calls for an FBI investigation into the accusation.


CNN's Jake Tapper asked: "Based on her sworn statement, the presentation you've seen from her attorney Michael Avenatti, do you believe her allegations?"

"Do I believe her allegations? What we need is, I keep coming back to it, we need an FBI investigation," Hirono responded, before adding that she found accounts from another one of Kavanaugh's accusers, Christine Blasey Ford, to be "credible."

Tapper asked again if she found Swetnick's charges credible.

"It's an affidavit. She's come forward saying that she's perfectly willing to talk to the FBI," Hirono said. "She knows, with all the clearances that she has, that lying to the FBI is a crime."

In an email to The Hill, Hirono's office pointed to a Wednesday message from the senator's Twitter account, which at the time called the allegations "credible" and called for the nomination to be rescinded.

"A third woman has come forward with a credible account of sexual misconduct by Brett Kavanaugh. The FBI must investigate this and all other reports. Time for @realDonaldTrump to withdraw this nomination," the senator's account tweeted.

Kavanaugh and Ford are testifying Thursday before the Senate Judiciary Committee to discuss Ford's allegation. Kavanaugh has denied all allegations against him.

The White House has maintained public support for Kavanaugh amid the firestorm caused by the accusations. Republicans have questioned Swetnick's credibility over her decision to be represented by Avenatti, the attorney representing adult film star Stormy Daniels in her case against President TrumpDonald John TrumpUSPS warns Pennsylvania mail-in ballots may not be delivered in time to be counted Michael Cohen book accuses Trump of corruption, fraud Trump requests mail-in ballot for Florida congressional primary MORE.

"This lady, Brett Kavanaugh says he's never met her. Michael Avenatti is her attorney. If you can't figure this out, then there's something wrong with you," Sen. Lindsay Graham (R-S.C.) told Fox News on Thursday ahead of the Senate hearing.

Updated at 12:25 p.m.