Sanders: 'I really just don't understand' Graham's Kavanaugh renomination proposal

Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersOvernight Health Care — Presented by March of Dimes — Abortion access for 65M women at stake Hospitals in underserved communities face huge cuts in reckless 'Build Back Better' plan Sanders urges Biden to delay Medicare premium hike linked to Alzheimer's drug MORE (I-Vt.) said Tuesday that he is not sure what Sen. Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamGraham emerges as go-to ally for Biden's judicial picks This Thanksgiving, skip the political food fights and talk UFOs instead Biden move to tap oil reserves draws GOP pushback MORE (R-S.C.) meant when he said President TrumpDonald TrumpHillicon Valley — State Dept. employees targets of spyware Ohio Republican Party meeting ends abruptly over anti-DeWine protesters Jan. 6 panel faces new test as first witness pleads the Fifth MORE should renominated Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh if the Senate doesn't confirm him this time. 

"I'm not quite sure I understand it. He said that if Kavanaugh loses the vote he wants Trump to renominate him?" Sanders asked, when asked on CNN about his stance on Graham's statement.

After CNN's Wolf Blitzer repeated Graham's statement, the senator shook his head and told him, "I really just don't understand what Graham is talking about."

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Graham, who gave an impassioned speech in defense of Kavanaugh at a confirmation hearing Thursday, said Monday that the president should "appeal the verdict of the Senate to the ballot box."

If he were the president, Graham said, "I would re-nominate him and I would take this case to the American people and I’d ask voters in Indiana, in Missouri, in North Dakota and other places where Trump won — saying who he would nominate if he got to be president — and see if the voters want to appeal the verdict of their senator."

Graham added Monday that he does not believe it will reach that point and that Kavanaugh will be confirmed at the conclusion of the week-long FBI investigation that began Friday. 

Sanders said Tuesday that the investigation should be the current point of focus.

"Clearly what has to happen now is the FBI needs to do a full investigation, determining his veracity," Sanders said, alluding to questions Kavnaugh's critics have raised regarding whether or not the nominee misrepresented his youthful drinking habits during his testimony Thursday.

"If you are lying you should not be seated," Sanders said, adding that the investigation should not be limited to a week. 

Sanders said he could not say if he would accept the conclusions of the report, given that he has "no idea what in fact they are investigating."

"I have a real concern whether they can do a thorough investigation regarding his veracity," he added.

The Democrats began calling for an FBI investigation into Christine Blasey Ford's allegation that Kavanaugh  sexually assault her at a party in the summer of 1982 shortly after Ford went public with her accusation.

Kavanaugh has unequivocally denied the allegation and provided his calendars from the period, which don't show the alleged party.

The two men Ford named as fellow attendees have denied going to an event like the one she described, while a third witness allegedly present, Leland Keyser, said she doesn't recall being at such a party. Keyser has gone on the record to say she believes Ford's account.

Republicans initially resisted the call for an investigation, saying it was not in the FBI's purview and calling it an attempt to delay Kavanaugh's confirmation process past the November midterms, where Democrats might pick up the seats needed to defeat him.

But Sen. Jeff FlakeJeffrey (Jeff) Lane FlakeRubio vows to slow-walk Biden's China, Spain ambassador nominees Senate confirms Thomas Nides as US ambassador to Israel Flake, Cindy McCain among latest Biden ambassadors confirmed after delay MORE (R-Ariz.) stunned his own party when he called for a weeklong investigation on Friday, after being berated in an elevator by a woman who had been sexually assaulted. 

Since then, Democrats have begun to question the investigation's scope and thoroughness, particularly in regards to Kavanaugh's drinking habits.

Kavanaugh said Thursday that he had at times drunk to excess in high school and college, but had never been blackout drunk. 

Some on the left have said he lied under oath and misrepresented how much he drank.