Grassley asks FBI to probe apparent false allegations against Kavanaugh

The Senate Judiciary Committee referred apparent false statements made to committee investigators alleging misconduct by Judge Brett Kavanaugh for criminal investigation on Saturday.

Chairman Chuck GrassleyCharles (Chuck) Ernest GrassleyTrump Citizenship and Immigration Services head out at agency Trump-Pelosi fight threatens drug pricing talks Overnight Health Care — Presented by PCMA — Senators unveil sweeping bipartisan health care package | House lawmakers float Medicare pricing reforms | Dems offer bill to guarantee abortion access MORE (R-Iowa) sent a letter to Attorney General Jeff SessionsJefferson (Jeff) Beauregard SessionsTrump's nastiest break-ups: A look at the president's most fiery feuds Five takeaways from Barr's new powers in 'spying' probe Amash: Some of Trump's actions 'were inherently corrupt' MORE and FBI Director Christopher Wray seeking to have “materially false statements” made to the committee as part of its investigation of allegations against Kavanaugh referred for criminal investigation.

In the letter, Grassley discussed the committee’s investigation into various allegations made against Kavanaugh, which he noted “has involved communicating with numerous individuals claiming to have relevant information.”

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“While many of those individuals have acted in good faith in providing the Committee information during the investigation, unfortunately it appears some have not,” Grassley said in the letter, before providing Sessions and Wray with the name of the individual who made the apparent false statements. 

The unidentified man in question who made the apparent false statement reportedly contacted Sen. Sheldon WhitehouseSheldon WhitehouseOvernight Energy: Democrats push EPA to collect 4K in 'excessive' Pruitt travel expenses | Greens angered over new rules for rocket fuel chemical | Inslee to join youth climate strikers in Las Vegas Democrats push EPA to collect 4K from Pruitt for 'excessive airfare expenses' Overnight Energy: Democrats ask if EPA chief misled on vehicle emissions | Dem senators want NBC debate focused on climate change | 2020 hopeful John Delaney unveils T climate plan MORE’s (D-R.I.) staff on Monday to report an allegation of sexual misconduct against Kavanaugh, according to Grassley’s letter.

The man claimed that in August of 1985, Kavanaugh sexually assaulted a close acquaintance of his on a boat in the harbor at Newport, R.I. 

As Grassley noted, the committee took the allegation seriously and asked Kavanaugh “numerous questions about it under penalty of felony” during an interview on Tuesday. Kavanaugh denied the allegation.

On Wednesday, the committee publicly released a redacted transcript of that interview, with the unidentified man’s name redacted.

“Afterwards, at 7:51 pm that same evening, [the man] 'recanted' and apologized for his allegation via social media,” Grassley wrote. “I have enclosed the relevant materials documenting these facts.” 

“The Committee is grateful to citizens who come forward with relevant information in good faith, even if they are not one hundred percent sure about what they know,” Grassley said in the letter. “But when individuals provide fabricated allegations to the Committee, diverting Committee resources during time-sensitive investigations, it materially impedes our work. Such acts are not only unfair; they are potentially illegal.”

“It is illegal to make materially false, fictitious, or fraudulent statements to Congressional investigators," he continued. “It is illegal to obstruct Committee investigations.”

“Accordingly, in light of the seriousness of these facts, and the threat these types of actions pose to the Committee’s ability to perform its constitutional duties, I hope you will give this referral the utmost consideration,” Grassley wrote.