Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley blasted Democratic Senator Chris Coons (CT) on Tuesday for forwarding an incredibly weak allegation against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh that wasted the resources of investigators.
The letter, written by Tad Low, alleged that a party took place in the frat house that Kavanaugh was a member of as an undergraduate and that a prostitute performed a public sex act while at the party.
Low writes that he had no idea if Kavanaugh was even at the party as he gave investigators “investigative advice” on how to do their jobs, instructing them to obtain Kavanaugh’s calendars and search to see if he attended a frat party in either 1987 or in 1988. The full letter states:
My name is Tad Low and I was an undergraduate at Yale during Brett Kavanaugh’s years in New Haven. During the 1987-88 school year, I was eyewitness to a shocking ceremony taking place inside DKE fraternity house that involved a semi-circle of cheering frat brothers watching a local prostitute perform a public sex act. I have three additional eyewitnesses, and two additional non-witnesses to whom I had related the event back in the late 80s. I can’t say for certain that Judge Kavanaugh was present in the frat house during the event, but he was still at Yale during the time period, attending Yale Law School, and I suspect he may have attended what would have been a bug part in the frat’s newly-purchased off-campus house. Since I know the name of one of the party’s attendees and since we know that Judge Kavanaugh saves meticulous personal calendars from his past, it shouldn’t be too difficult to ascertain whether he was present at this event.
I contacted the New York office of the FBI Saturday, September 29th, midday. After waiting on hold for 15 minutes, I onboarded my name, my recollection, the identity of the one frat brother seen at the event, my investigative advice and my witnesses’ names and phone numbers to what seemed like a low-level input agent. I also contacted the New Haven branch office of the FBI yesterday, Sunday, September 30th. I haven’t heard anything yet from either office.
Please let me know if you, your office or your Committee would be interested in hearing more.
In a response, Grassley ripped the allegations to pieces and then hammered Coons for forwarding such a weak claim to his office for investigation, noting that he was wasting the investigator’s resources. Grassley’s full letter states:
Dear Senator Coons,
I have tried to take every allegation referred to me during this nomination process seriously and have dedicated significant resources to investigating every relevant and probative lead. Although you and I have not seen eye-to-eye on every issue, I appreciate that you’ve handled yourself with the seriousness befitting a U.S. Senator throughout much of this nomination process. That’s why I was disappointed when you forwarded me allegations relating to Judge Kavanaugh’s “years in New Haven.” The accuser — who apparently created a television show in which people strip while dancing to their favorite music — tells of a party that took place at the house of Judge Kavanaugh’s undergraduate fraternity “during the 1987-88 school year” and which allegedly featured some salacious activity. Of course, Judge Kavanaugh had already graduated when this party allegedly took place and was a first-year law student. That period is, as you well know, the most academically intense time in most law students’ lives.
This allegation has all the makings of a tabloid headline. But there’s just one problem. The accuser freely admits to having no evidence whatsoever that Judge Kavanaugh even attended the party. Rather than provide even circumstantial evidence of Judge Kavanaugh’s attendance, the accuser provides some “investigative advice.” He proposes that someone search Judge Kavanaugh’s calendars — the very same calendars that your colleagues have dismissed and derided with regard to Dr. Ford’s allegations — to determine whether he attended a fraternity party at some point in 1987 or 1988. All he alleges is that he once witnessed a salacious party at a house owned by Judge Kavanaugh’s undergraduate fraternity. He then separately advises us to obtain and search Judge Kavanaugh’s calendars to determine if he attended.
We’ve reached a new level of absurdity with this allegation. There is no evidence that Judge Kavanaugh was anywhere near the party or had anything to do with it at all. In fact, the only person we can be sure that attended the party was the accuser himself. The lone connection between Judge Kavanaugh and the events described by the accuser is that, as an undergraduate, Judge Kavanaugh was a member of the fraternity that hosted the party. The purpose of this allegation is plain: to smear Judge Kavanaugh’s name by associating him with the party’s hosts. This guilt-by-association tactic is the basest form of political attack and deserves unqualified condemnation.
My investigators have serious work to do. While the Minority has refused to engage with allegations against Judge Kavanaugh in any meaningful way, my investigators have tried to pursue every relevant lead. I therefore hope that, before forwarding an allegation in the future, you will first consider whether you’d want you or your staff to spend valuable time investigating it. Thanks for your consideration.