First, the Democrats claimed that Republicans didn’t want to hear from the accuser of Judge Brett Kavanaugh. Then when Republicans said they’d love to hear from her, and would she please show up and testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee, Democrats suggested that such a request was sexist and cruel — that no hearing could be held without an FBI investigation. Now, in an attempt to look forthcoming without actually coming forth with any credible information, the accuser’s lawyers are playing games with the Senate Judiciary Committee.
On Thursday night, lawyers for Christine Blasey Ford outlined a series of demands from the Senate Judiciary Committee in order for Ford to testify under oath. Let it first be said that Kavanaugh has denied all charges and will testify on Monday under oath; if he’s found to be lying, he’ll go to jail for perjury. So this is no game to Kavanaugh.
But it’s a game for Ford’s lawyers. Here were just a few of their demands:
- No outside counsel questions her;
- The defense testifies first;
- Subpoena against Mark Judge.
The subpoena against Judge doesn’t seem unreasonable — she alleges he was there. The other two conditions are fully unreasonable. Kavanaugh won’t have the ability to confront his accuser; not only that, she wants to reverse the entire criminal procedure process by having the defense testify without ever hearing the actual claims against him. That’s insane. Finally, prohibiting outside counsel from asking questions is a way of promoting grandstanding by senators, not of reaching the truth. If Kavanaugh can’t ask questions, why should Republicans have to be his lawyers, rather than an actual lawyer for Kavanaugh?
It should be noted that those who are asked to testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee generally don’t get to negotiate the terms of their testimony. The Senate Judiciary Committee does indeed have subpoena power. But Ford and her lawyers are obviously making the most of charges of insensitivity to tilt the playing field in her direction, or to avoid having to testify at all. That does undermine her credibility.