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Key Republicans Condemn Trump's Mockery of Christine Blasey Ford
Written by <a href="index.php?option=com_comprofiler&task=userProfile&user=35416"><span class="small">Sabrina Siddiqui, Guardian UK</span></a>   
Wednesday, 03 October 2018 13:03

Siddiqui writes: "Donald Trump has been sharply condemned for mocking Dr Christine Blasey Ford - the woman who accused Brett Kavanaugh of sexual assault - with three key Republicans who could determine if the federal judge is confirmed to the US supreme court calling the comments 'appalling' and 'just plain wrong.'"

Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) (L) and Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) head to the weekly Senate Republican policy luncheon at the US Capitol on October 2, 2018. (photo: Getty)
Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) (L) and Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) head to the weekly Senate Republican policy luncheon at the US Capitol on October 2, 2018. (photo: Getty)


Key Republicans Condemn Trump's Mockery of Christine Blasey Ford

By Sabrina Siddiqui, Guardian UK

03 October 10

 

onald Trump has been sharply condemned for mocking Dr Christine Blasey Ford – the woman who accused Brett Kavanaugh of sexual assault – with three key Republicans who could determine if the federal judge is confirmed to the US supreme court calling the comments “appalling” and “just plain wrong”.

At a campaign rally in Mississippi on Tuesday night, Trump cast doubt on Ford’s allegation that Kavanaugh, Trump’s nominee for the US supreme court, attempted to rape her when the two were teenagers in the early 1980s.

As supporters cheered, the president ridiculed Ford’s testimony before the Senate judiciary committee last week, where she conceded she could not remember certain details but vividly recounted the alleged assault by Kavanaugh.

“I wish he hadn’t have done it and I just say it’s kind of appalling,” Republican Senator Jeff Flake of Arizona said in an interview with NBC.

“There is no time and no place for remarks like that, but to discuss something this sensitive at a political rally is just not right.” Flake later predicted to CNN that the FBI would complete its report on Wednesday or Thursday.

Two other Republican swing votes, Susan Collins of Maine and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, also rebuked Trump from Capitol Hill.

“The president’s comments were just plain wrong,” Collins said.

Murkowski told reporters it was “wholly inappropriate” and “unacceptable” for Trump to mock Ford. “I am taking everything into account,” she said.

Even Senator Lindsey Graham, one of Trump and Kavanaugh’s most vociferous defenders – who dramatically snatched control of the questioning during last week’s hearing from Republican-appointed prosecutor Rachel Mitchell – said on Wednesday: “I do not like what the president said last night.”

A handful of moderate Republicans in the Senate could seal Kavanaugh’s fate. Last week, an FBI investigation into the allegations against Kavanaugh was opened after Flake signalled he would not vote to confirm the federal judge to America’s highest court without further inquiry.

Some of Trump’s traditional media allies were also critical of his move, suggesting it could undermine Kavanaugh’s prospects at a time when Republicans are looking to press forward with a vote on his nomination.

“The tactic of the president laying low has been lauded by all sides,” said Brian Kilmeade, a host of Trump’s preferred morning show Fox & Friends. “Last night he chose to blow it, as the FBI is handing in the report as early as today.

“I wonder about the wisdom, as much as the crowd loved it, I wonder about the wisdom tactically of him doing that.”

But senior administration adviser Kellyanne Conway defended Trump. Speaking to reporters at the White House, she said he was merely pointing out “factual inaccuracies” in the professor’s account.

In defense of robust challenges, she added that Ford has “been treated like a Fabergé egg by all of us, beginning with me and the president”.

Conway argued that “those who pretend they are searching for truth are already voting against him” and said Democratic senators pursuing re-election in states Trump carried in 2016 should know that their voters “want him to be confirmed”.

Trump had initially dubbed Ford a “very credible witness” even as he forcefully defended Kavanaugh against allegations of sexual misconduct, which have also been levied by two other women. Kavanaugh denies all the allegations.

But at his rally on Tuesday, he dismissively imitated Ford’s testimony.

“How did you get home?” Trump said, reiterating a question the committee asked Ford. “I don’t remember,” he then parroted.

“How did you get there? ‘I don’t remember.’ Where is the place? ‘I don’t remember.’ How many years ago was it? ‘I don’t know.’ What neighborhood was it? ‘I don’t know.’ Where’s the house? ‘I don’t know.’”

Testifying last week, Ford, a California research psychologist , drew on her own expertise to explain how the brain processed traumatic memories.

“It’s just basic memory functions, and also just the level of norepinephrine and epinephrine in the brain that … encodes memories into the hippocampus so that trauma-related experience is locked there [while] other memories just drift,” Ford said.

One of Ford’s attorneys, Michael Bromwich, condemned Trump’s remarks on Twitter, writing: “A vicious, vile and soulless attack on Dr Christine Blasey Ford. Is it any wonder that she was terrified to come forward, and that other sexual assault survivors are as well? She is a remarkable profile in courage. He is a profile in cowardice.”

Democrat Chuck Schumer, the Senate minority leader, called on Trump to apologize.

Last week, the Senate judiciary committee voted along party lines to advance Kavanaugh’s nomination for the consideration of the full chamber.

But Flake, Collins and Murkowski have said their vote will be determined by the outcome of the FBI investigation. Two red state Democrats up for re-election in November, Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota, have also yet to take a position on Kavanaugh.

Flake said Wednesday he did not wish to “pre-judge” the work of federal investigators. But he said the nomination would be over if it was revealed Kavanaugh had lied to the committee.

“If there are demonstrable lies … and if he misled the committee in that way, then that’s something that is not right and shouldn’t happen,” he said.

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+4 # wilhelmscream 2018-10-03 15:08
Will this b a goldmine 4 SNL and Weekend Updated on SNL? Let’s hope so; SNL is good @ calling out Trump’s BS!
 
 
+14 # jellyroll 2018-10-03 19:19
While his mocking of Dr Ford was horrific, something else he said at the rally was truly frightening; “The Democrat Party has become too extreme. And too dangerous to be trusted with power.”Anyone who thinks comparisons of Trump to Hitler are over the top needs to contemplate this statement.
 
 
+5 # lfeuille 2018-10-03 23:24
Just condemning his words isn't good enough. They have to vote against Kavanaugh or they are just Trump enablers.
 
 
+4 # vilstef 2018-10-04 00:23
Trump's toadies are the worst. I'd like to observe to some of these knuckle-draggin g Trump supporters, "So, you're OK with a drunken frat boy roofieing your daughter?"