The Sift Here’s what we’re Sifting today

Planned Kavanaugh, accuser hearing uncertain

by Harvest Prude & Mickey McLean
Posted 9/18/18, 02:41 pm

A planned continuation of Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee next Monday, in which he and the woman accusing him of sexual assault when they were teenagers would testify, hit some snags Tuesday.

Christine Blasey Ford, who said Kavanaugh pinned her to a bed, groped her, and prevented her from calling for help at a party during the early 1980s, has not confirmed she will participate despite several attempts by committee Chairman Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, to reach her and her representatives.

Meanwhile, Senate Democrats are demanding that the FBI reopen its background check on Kavanaugh before resuming the hearing. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., said an FBI investigation is “essential” to prevent the hearing from becoming merely a “he said, she said affair.”

President Donald Trump remained steadfast in his support of his nominee and said the FBI should not be involved. “If [the FBI] wanted to be [involved], I would certainly do that. But as you know, they say this is not really their thing. But I think politically speaking, the senators will do a very good job,” Trump said

If the hearing should resume, Democrats insist that Kavanaugh’s classmate, Mark Judge, who Ford said was present during the incident, also should testify. Sen Dick Durbin of Illinois said Judge is needed “specifically and personally as an eyewitness to the occurrence. He should testify under oath.”

Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., told The Washington Post that he does not see a reason to hear from Judge: “He’s already said what he’s going to say. I want to hear from her, if she wants to speak.”

Kavanaugh has repeatedly denied the accusations.

Read more from The Sift Sign up for The Sift email
Harvest Prude

Harvest is a reporter for WORLD based in Washington, D.C.

Read more from this writer
Mickey McLean

Mickey is executive editor of WORLD Digital.

Read more from this writer


You must be a WORLD Member and logged in to the website to comment.
  •  David Troup's picture
    David Troup
    Posted: Tue, 09/18/2018 03:09 pm

    So if Ford, lies uner oath, will she be charged as an adult while charging a teenage boy who's records would have been sealed if this were true?

    Flashback: Justice Bork, Justice Thomas.

    Democrats believe in good and evil over right and wrong (which no one can agree on these days).  But if Kavanaugh is evil,  then all lies are a go if that evil is destroyed.

  • Bob R
    Posted: Tue, 09/18/2018 03:24 pm

    Democrats believe only in political expedience.  If they really believed in "good" and "evil", Bill Clinton's many accusers would have gotten a full and fair hearing.  

  • RC
    Posted: Tue, 09/18/2018 03:54 pm

    Is the reason Ms. Ford has not decided to testify because she is in negotiations with the Dems for a payoff?  Since the Dems paid protesters $50 each to yell at the hearings, I wonder how much they are willing to pay for Ms. Ford's testimony?

  • DakotaLutheran
    Posted: Tue, 09/18/2018 03:59 pm

    It is unclear to me exactly what the accusation has to do with determining whether Kavanaugh should be confirmed or not. Suppose he has outstanding parking tickets. Suppose someone saw him steal a candy bar when he was 12 years old, but was never prosecuted. Suppose he lied about someone, resulting in their being harmed. Suppose these and a myriad other kinds of offenses, some criminal, others not. Isn't this, then, a matter for the appropriate authorities. After all, who believe that any Supreme Court judge is blameless? How exactly are we to determine whether someone is fit to the Supreme Court? 

  • Bob R
    Posted: Tue, 09/18/2018 04:26 pm

    Senator Schumer,

    If the FBI were to investigate this alleged assault, what could they possibly turn up after all these years other than a "he-said, she said affair"?  (Unless, of course, they conducted it with the same level of impartiality as the Mueller investigation?)

  • Eual D. Blanset...
    Posted: Tue, 09/18/2018 05:15 pm

    Your article on a planned Senate hearing on the confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh as the next Justice of the United States Supreme Court reads like an article from the New York Times and that is NOT meant as a compliment.

    In the first paragraph, you refer to Christine Blasey Ford's accusations in general terms: "sexual assault."  And, you did not even ascribe the accusations as allegations, which is the way lawyers do it.  You make the accusations appear to be facts.

    In the second paragraph, you describe the sexual assault in graphic terms: "pinned her to the bed groped her, and prevented her for calling for help..."  And, again, the give her full rendering of the imagined event in factual terms and they should have been ascribed as allegations.  

    In the seventh and LAST paragraph of the article, after infecting the mind of the reader with the accusations, you indicate that Kavanaugh has repeatedly denied the accusations.  In fact, he not only has denied the accusations, he has indicated that he was not even at the alleged party.  In fact, the other boy who is alleged to have been in the room, has denied the incident ever happened.  In addition, when Ford first brought the "incident" to light in 2012, she told a therapist that there were FOUR males in the room.  It is too bad that she did not name them then, which she could have done, because there is no doubt that none of them would have been Kavanaugh.  Also, you should have detailed her entire history of histrionics against Trump and the Anti-Abortion movement.  She has opposed both with personal participation in protests.

    Further, the Repubicans in the Senate would be tossing her accusations to the wind if the number of Republicans in the Senate were higher.  The 51-49 margin is too narrow to risk one or more of the Republicans bailing out and Senator Flake, true to his name, has indicated that he would vote against Kavanaugh if Ford were not invited to participate in the hearings.  Of course, Pence would then cast the deciding vote for Kavanaugh and we could all have our Thanksgiving Dinner in peace.  However, if one other Republican moron decided to play politics with the matter, then Kavanaugh would be doomed.  

    It is unfortunate that good, honest, upright people do not want to get involved in politics.  Now we see why.  At least you could have given Kavanaugh a more neutral approach to the matter. 

    In short, you need to either go back to the World Journalism Institute for further training or you need to stop having Daisy write your articles.

    Eual D. Blansett, Jr.

  •  Brendan Bossard's picture
    Brendan Bossard
    Posted: Tue, 09/18/2018 09:36 pm

    First, this article is meant to summarize the situation, not provide in-depth analysis.  Thus, you are reading too much into what it does or does not say.  I think Ms. Prude and Mr. McLean did a good job.

    Second, Sen. Flake said, "If they push forward without any attempt with hearing what she's had to say, I'm not comfortable voting yes.  We need to hear from her.  And I don't think I'm alone in this," according to Politico.  There is wisdom in this, given the #MeToo movement's power.  Like it or not, we cannot treat Prof. Ford's accusation with disregard.  Sen. Flake's position is neither flaky nor moronic, but street-smart, in my opinion.

    We Christians need to wait for God in this.  If we pray for the wicked to be brought to light, and the good to be enhanced, God will do so at the right time.  He does not bless impatience and insults.

  • Cyborg3's picture
    Posted: Wed, 09/19/2018 05:13 am

    You are correct in your assessment Eual. Thanks for your comments! Yes, this is a political hit job and the Democrats are stalling to prevent Brett from being confirmed! 

  • RW
    Posted: Tue, 09/18/2018 07:29 pm

    Thank you for this fair and professionally written article. I look to World to give me an unfettered and unfiltered report on the news and have been pleased by your coverage of this issue. 

    The politics of this situation is obvious. Let us pray for the truth to be unavoidably revealed. 

  •  Brendan Bossard's picture
    Brendan Bossard
    Posted: Tue, 09/18/2018 09:53 pm


    That God will strengthen and protect the righteous, and crush the wicked in this trial.

    That God will grant all of the Senators wisdom--even the ones who we deem foolish beyond hope.

    That God will help us patiently to wait for Him to work.

  • E Cole
    Posted: Wed, 09/19/2018 11:14 am

    And what if she is telling the truth? Some of you have already made clear that you don't care about the people-only the politics. But for those of you who are genuinely seeking discernment and God's will in this matter, what do you feel is a proper Christian response? 

  • Cyborg3's picture
    Posted: Wed, 09/19/2018 09:11 pm

    Do you want us to feel her pain? A better option is to  look at the evidence with discernment. Democrats have done this over and over where they bring forward some woman with allegations right before a critical election or special vote. They view the ends justify the means, so they do this quite regularly as a political hit. The Democrats don’t care about the woman nor if the accusations are true or not! Look at Senator Fienstien where she admitted she didn’t know. Why bring forward an allegation like this that can never be verified before this vote? Why didn’t she bring this up years ago? Why did she forget the incident and have to be reminded of it years later while undergoing psychological counseling? Also, we have the many women who have worked years with Kavanaugh and he has always treated them with absolute respect? Should not Kavanaugh’s record of years of integrity count for nothing? A proper Christian response will be to show wisdom and not delay the vote. 

  • Joel
    Posted: Wed, 09/19/2018 11:25 pm

    The proper Christian response is to show love, even to love our enemies, by treating them the way God's law requires. God's revealed will is what shows us how to love our neighbors. "What if" thinking is not seeking discernment; it is leaning on our own understanding, and it is decidedly uncaring toward Brett Kavanaugh.

    Even if Prof. Ford were telling the truth, it would be a proper Christian response to dismiss her accusations, because God holds us accountable to follow His way, not to intuit the truth with our feelings.

    See Deut. 19:15 and other references posted in earlier replies by OldMike and Brendan. Deut. 19:15 continues, "Only on the evidence of two witnesses or of three witnesses . . . ." Why does it add, "or of three"? Just as Brendan pointed out, there must be diligent inquiry, so even two witnesses should not always be accepted.

    Some Democrats are calling for the classmate, Mark Judge, to testify. He has denied Prof. Ford's account, but he is reported to be a drunkard, not a reliable witness. What if he shows up at the hearing and reverses his testimony? If worthless fellows were found to testify against Naboth, Jesus, and Stephen, it could happen to Kavanaugh. But some people don't care about politics, even when it gets innocent people killed.

  • OldMike
    Posted: Wed, 09/19/2018 02:28 pm

    I was on a jury on a rape case once. Absolutely true story.

    There was the teenage girl saying it happened. There was the adult man saying it didn’t. (They were members of the same household.)  That is ALL the evidence that was presented to the jury. 

    The girl did not tell anyone about alleged rape until a week or so after. She was never given any kind of medical exam. No witnesses. Nothing. 

    The defendant was asked on the stand, “Now why would this girl make up such a story?”  He replied, “I told her she couldn’t go hang out in the middle of the night with some boys I don’t trust.  Maybe she said I raped her to pay me back.”  (The defendant was the girl’s step-uncle, or something like that.) 

    The jurors all had to agree, “Well, a rape COULD have happened, but that sure doesn’t meet the ‘beyond a reasonable doubt’ standard.  Not guilty.”

    But of course, the Senate Democrats operate on a somewhat different standard.  Their standard appears to be, “If Kavanaugh on the Supreme Court will hurt our cause, we have to find him guilty regardless of the evidence.”

    For the rest of us, whether a good man is being defamed, or a bad person is being exposed, probably depends on our individual personal experiences as much as on the scanty evidence of an assault. 

    Deuteronomy 19:15 ESV says, “A single witness shall not suffice against a person for any crime or for any wrong in connection with any offense that he has committed...” I would regard that as the standard Christians should follow. 

  •  Brendan Bossard's picture
    Brendan Bossard
    Posted: Wed, 09/19/2018 09:36 pm

    You beat me to the punch.  I would also add:

    (1)  “You shall do no injustice in court. You shall not be partial to the poor or defer to the great, but in righteousness shall you judge your neighbor." (Lev 19:15, ESV2011)  We must not allow our sympathies to influence our judgment.

    (2)  “If you hear in one of your cities, which the LORD your God is giving you to dwell there, that certain worthless fellows have gone out among you and have drawn away the inhabitants of their city, saying, ‘Let us go and serve other gods,’ which you have not known, then you shall inquire and make search and ask diligently. And behold, if it be true and certain that such an abomination has been done among you, you shall surely put the inhabitants of that city to the sword, devoting it to destruction, all who are in it and its cattle, with the edge of the sword. (Deut 13:12-15, ESV2011)  Note the key words that I emphasized.  This is about a traitorous city, but the principles of (a) diligent inquiry, and (b) truth and certainty apply in all cases where someone accuses someone else of something.  We must not destroy a person's career (or potentially change an entire nation's path) based on mere suspicion.


  • not silent
    Posted: Wed, 09/19/2018 11:33 pm

    I have been unsure exactly what to say about this because the whole thing has been very confusing and upsetting to me as a survivor of sexual assault.  This is basically a no-win situation as far as I'm concerned.

    If the accusation is true, then it was presented at the worst possible time-at a time when the victim would be subjected to the maximal publicity, scrutiny, and attack. I can't imagine why it wouldn't have been presented sooner when it could have been investigated and when it would be less traumatic.  In fact, I can't imagine why anyone who cares anything about victims would do it this way.  

    People who experience assault should definitely be heard, but using their stories at the most dramatic possible moment for political gain is not okay.  Making a sexual assault look like a political stunt hurts ALL of us!