tv U.S. Senate Sen. Cornyn on Ford- Kavanaugh Hearing CSPAN September 29, 2018 6:29am-6:54am EDT
grace under pressure. that is christine blasey ford. i express my gratitude shared by many in america for that great teaching moment yesterday. we should honor her by acting in a way that keeps faith with her honesty and bravery. thank you mr. print incident. i yelled for. >> mr. president, as the world knows by now yesterday we had another hearing on the nomination of judge brett kavanaugh to be a number member of the united states supreme court. this necessary to do so because allegation have been made by doctor blasey ford on july 30.
but, because doctor ford requested confidentiality and she wanted to remain anonymous, none of this was brought to attention until sometime after the judge original confirmation hearing occurred. the judge visited with 60 plus members of the senate including the ranking member. it was never mentioned to him. no questions asked about it. contrary to her wishes doctor ford was thrust into the spotlight. she said she didn't agree to have her letter released to the press. she did not consent to having her identity revealed. she did not want to be part of what has turned into a three ring circus. but, once there when she asked
to tell her story, we consented to doing that. yesterday we heard from doctor ford. as well as judge kavanaugh. judge kavanaugh asked to be heard to clear his good name speak directly to the american people. he did so forcefully yesterday. now we have heard doctor ford story and we have her judge kavanaugh's rebuttal. what we have learned is there is no evidence to corroborate doctor ford's allegations. all of the people she said were there on the occasion in question said they have no memory of it where it did not happen. no cooperation. as we watched judge kavanaugh defend his personal integrity we saw his righteous indignation.
he choked back his tears. named his fury not at doctor ford, none of us did that. but rather of this unfair confirmation process which frankly is an embarrassment to me and should be an embarrassment to the senate. to take someone who has requested confidentiality and leak that information to the press. to thrust her into the national spotlight under the circumstances i think is an abuse of power. having made that request, when she was in the spotlight we felt like it was important to treat her respectfully and to listen to her story. i've told anybody who would listen that i wanted to treat doctor ford the same way i would expect my mother or my sister or
my daughters to be treated under certain circumstances. conversely, i thought we should treat judge kavanaugh fairly too. just as we would our father, brother, or son. in other words, this is more than just about doctor ford. this is about doctor ford and judge kavanaugh. we heard the judge respond with righteous indignation, talking about his family been exposed to the threats including his two young daughters. i know it was a hard pill for many democratic colleagues to swallow to hear the truth of what this terrible process has resulted in, both for judge kavanaugh and doctor ford.
but too much was on the line for judge kavanaugh to withhold his defense of his good name. after all, his reputation is on the line. his family is on the line. in his family including his wife and two daughters are caught up in what must be a miserable experience. still, i'm glad we held the hearing and i'm grateful for rachel mitchell for asking her probing questions. why would a senator yield to a professional in the sexual abuse field to ask questions of doctor ford, is simply because we wanted to depoliticize that process. and to treat doctor ford with respect and gently recognizing that somehow, somewhere she has
been exposed to terrible trauma. it was important for ms. ms. joel to ask questions and get answers to those questions so we can do our job. i repeat appreciate chairman grassley for doing his best for keeping order and running this efficiently is much as that is possible i said at the first hearing after senators would speak over each other would endlessly make motions out of order, when one senator said, i'm breaking confidentiality rules. i said this seems like a hearing by mob rule not the kind of demeanor and civility that you would expect from the united states senate. i think chairman grassley has done the best anybody could do under difficult circumstances.
this hearing was not easy for doctor ford or judge kavanaugh. it has been painful for everybody involved. thankfully we are closer to a resolution. today there is some workup in the judiciary committee and i'm glad we are and how to pass that nomination out of the committee to the senate floor. some are saying or moving too fast. to them i would say it's clear that the objective of the opponents of the nomination is. their objective is delayed. delay, delay, delay. some have said their goal is to delay this confirmation past the midterm election. hope it turns out well for them and essentially defeat the nomination and keep the supreme court vacancy position open until president trump leaves office. first there is a paper chase
that they needed more documents, or perhaps they said you had too many. the question i had was if you have already announced your opposition why do you need more information unless you're open to changing your mind. it's clear that's not the game we are engaged in. now, there's those that demand the background information that appeared after doctor ford's be opened up. today, the majority leader and colleagues have announced an agreement to extend the background information up to another week for these allegations and witnesses to be interviewed by the fbi. i note the most recent allegations are so absurd,
ourselves fantastic that not even the new york times would run a story about judge kavanaugh's time in college as reported by ms. ramirez. they worked hard to try to corroborate her story by interviewing dozens of witnesses and none would confirm the story. they did find that ms. ramirez was talking to an individual interview before she admitted she may have misidentified judge kavanaugh. in other words she admitted she may have the wrong guy. not credible. not serious, but dangerous. it's dangerous in the sense that some colleagues take the position that all you need to do is listen to an accusation that's enough to make up your mind. you don't need to listen to the other side like judge kavanaugh
said it didn't happen, he wasn't there. if you just listen to one side of the argument it makes making up your mind easier because you don't have to think about it. you don't have to think about what affair processes to decide whose argument you believe or whether somebody has met the burden to show evidence that their claim is actually true. this is gotten so ridiculous the newest claim is made by new woman who is represented by stormy daniels lawyer. it is riddled with holes. why would a woman continue to go to parties with high schoolers when she was in college and why would she go to not one, not two, but ten of these drug and
alcohol abuse parties were gang rape occurred? it's outrageous. incredible. we have encouraged all individuals no matter how incredible the allegation may be to work with the judiciary committee and submit an interview. this is standard operating procedure for the judiciary committee. the basic background investigations done by the fbi but they're not investigating a crime. it's a background investigation. they take notes on conversations with witnesses. they don't tell you which witness to believe or what conclusions to draw. they said that to the judiciary committee and the judiciary committee follows up with additional questions if
necessary. in lying to the fbi just like lying to the committee is actually crime punishable as a felony. both carry serious consequences in a serious warning to those who might try to lie their way into a background check. was so ridiculous about where we find ourselves is that in addition to doctor ford's confidential letter to the ranking member being released without her consent contributing to the circus atmosphere as we continue to try to investigate these claims the democratic professional staff have been refusing to cooperate. or participate even as they continue to make more demands. it's clear their appetite for delay is insatiable and delays
the ultimate goal. for those who continue to say they want the fbi involved, i'll tell you the fbi has been and is involved. it has conducted its background information just as it did in the previous occasions when judge kavanaugh was being vetted for other positions. he has been through six fbi background checks. none of these matters have come up previously. but we are doing yesterday with the hearing was part of our job which is to continue the investigation. i think people have a very narrow it idea what the investigation details. as the interviews by the professional staff and its hearings like we had yesterday, all day hearing from judge kavanaugh doctor ford.
that's our job and our constitutional role to provide advice and consent. plus, if our colleagues were really interested in a background investigation of doctor ford's complaints in a confidential manner like she requested they could have requested that be done in the results reported to us in a closed setting. what happened to doctor for is inexcusable. to have a senator sit on this allegation and refused to turn it into the committee so it could be investigated in a confidential way to protect her and amenity and allow the committee to question both judge kavanaugh and her, that didn't happen. by design perhaps.
because the goal wasn't about giving judge kavanaugh or doctor ford a fair hearing, it's about delaying the confirmation vote. judge kavanaugh was interviewed about a week ago and yesterday he talked about a fair process. so hearing from both sides of an argument. under our constitutional system, if you're accused of a crime, and believe me judge kavanaugh has been accused of multiple crimes come a year entitled to the presumption of innocence. there is a burden to come forward with evidence to justify and support an accusation. if you don't do that, your accusation is not enough to meet that burden. usually we have corroborating witnesses. other people present at the time who can corroborate what the
allegation is. all the witnesses identified by doctor ford cannot corroborate or confirm her allocation. they say i have no memory of that or simply didn't happen. even the bible talks about the importance of cooperating witnesses. i didn't find this, i vaguely remembered it. someone on my staff pointed out deuteronomy 19 verse 15. one witnesses is not enough to convict anyone. the matter must be established by two or three witnesses. this is a rule of ancient origin dating back to the old testament. that's what were talking about. when doctor ford comes forward with an accusation 36 years after the fact and no one else
can confirm her story, it is not enough to carry the day. the other thing we have to be wary of his false choices. this is not a matter of he said, she said. this is a matter of he said, she said, they said. doctor ford said one thing, judge kavanaugh set another and the witnesses set another. but what they said did not corroborate doctor ford's story. they confirmed judge kavanaugh's denial of any participation in anything remotely like that doctor ford alleges. so, after 36 years as ms. mitchell was able to
develop, we know that for obvious reasons doctor ford's account has some inconsistencies and gaps regarding the timing, location, and details about the events. i think we need to listen to her. we need to take her story into account. as i said, i want to treat her the same way i would want my mother, sister, or daughters treated under certain circumstances. but we can ignore the inconsistencies. we also can't ignore the full throated defense and heartfelt denial of judge kavanaugh. or the testimony that none of this is in the character of judge kavanaugh. we heard that from people dating back to 1982.
indeed, as ms. mitchell, professional prosecutor prosecuting sex crimes in arizona, she told us last night that with more than two decades of experience with the kind of case brought forward by ms. ford, she would not file those charges against the defendant. there simply is not enough evidence. in fact, the only witnesses identified by doctor ford denied the event occurred. as a matter fact she said she couldn't get a search warrant were an arrest warrant in a case like this. if you can identify the time or place, you're not going to get a search warrant and can't show probable cause which is required by law.
here's where we are. if the allegation we discussed during yesterday's hearing remains uncorroborated and unproven, if it never came up in the context of six federal background checks. if it has been denied by the nominee and if the three alleged eyewitnesses have no recollection of it, if it conflicts with the account of 65 women that knew the nominee to behave honorably in high school and countless more women who have noted interacted with him since, if the timing seems unusual and perhaps politically motivated and of our colleagues across the aisle chose to not act on this but rather spring a sonnet after the fact, there is no reason in my mind why we should not move forward with the
nomination. we see what happens. it is not just about doctor ford. it is about the subsequent allegations by mr. mears. each of the other allegations are salacious and out of character with what we know about brett kavanaugh. it's going to continue. the longer this nomination is unresolved, there will be more more people come out of the woodwork and make accusations uncorroborated and unprovable. you can imagine what this does to judge kavanaugh and his family as he is left hanging like a piñata where people just come by and take another whack at him and his family. but we have to move forward. we cannot establish a precedent by which one can be derailed by an accusation that is unproven.
we'll never get good people to agree to serve in these important offices. we cannot allow the nomination process to be a drive-by character assassination that is unproven. if the only ammunition our colleagues need to shoot down any figure at any time would be in innuendo, speculation, suspicion unproven allegations, nothing more but were not going to let that happen. were not going to establish that precedent. be bad for the senate and bad for the united states of america. please don't misunderstand me. i'm glad doctor ford had a chance to head per se. i know it took courage and it's a reminder that victims can and
should be heard. as i have said, i have two daughters. unlike me we all have a mother, some are fortunate to have sisters or spouse so this can be a very personal matter but we all know each of us have father, brothers, many of us have brothers some have husbands and sons. of this uncorroborated allegation would seem so manipulated and exploiting vulnerable people who have made accusations like this, if we tolerate that i think it will forever poison the confirmation process and discourage good people from coming forward. we must always be fair to both the victims and those who stand accused.
i've supported the nomination because i've known him since year 2000. in my experience he has been an upstanding and certainly an incredibly well qualified individual. referred everybody from his fellow lawyers to law clerks and women he's worked with two former presidents of the united states say that. we know he has an incredible record where many of his decisions have been affirmed by the united states supreme court. i know he will judge fairly and carefully. i believe he belongs on the nation highest bench. in a few more days after a few more delays we will finally vote to put him there and say enough with the games.