Skip to main content

tv   MSNBC Live With Velshi and Ruhle  MSNBC  September 27, 2018 8:00am-9:00am PDT

8:00 am
i want to thank you very much for your testimony. i know how very, very hard it is. why -- why have you held it to yourself all these years? as you look back, can you indicate what the reasons are? >> well, i haven't held in all these years. i did disclose it in the confines of therapy where i felt like it was an appropriate place to cope with the s of the events. >> can you tell us what impact the events had on you? >> well, i think that the secualae of sexual assaults varies by person. for me personally, anxiety, phobia and ptsd-like symptoms are the types of things that i've been coping with, so more
8:01 am
specifically claustaphobia and that kind of thing. >> is that the the reason for the second front door? >> correct. it doesn't -- our house does not look aesthetically pleasing from the curb. >> i see. and do you have that second front door? >> yes. it now is a place to host google interns because we live near going google. >> can you tell us, is there any other way this has affected your life? >> the primary impact was in the initial four years after the event. i struggled academically. i struggled very much in chapel hill and in college when i was 17 and went off to college, i had a very hard time, more so than others, forming new friendships, especially friendships with boys, and i had
8:02 am
academic problems. >> what were the -- when we spoke and it became very clear how deeply you felt about this and the need that you wanted to remain confidential, can you talk a little bit about that? >> yes, so i was watching carefully throughout the summer. well, my original intent, i just want to remind was to communicate with everyone when there was still a list of candidates who all seemed to be, just from my perspective, from what i could read equally qualified, and i was in a hurry to try to get the information forward but didn't quite know how to do that. however, once he was selected and it seemed like he was popular and that it was a sure vote, i was calculating daily the risk/benefit for me of
8:03 am
coming forward and wondering whether i would just be jumping in front of a train that was headed to where it was headed anyway and that i would just be personally annihilated. >> how did you decide to come forward? >> ultimately because reporters were sitting outside of my home and trying to talk to my dog through the window to calm the dog down, and a reporter appeared in my graduate classroom, and i mistook her for a student, and she came up to ask me a question, and i thought that she was a student, and it turned out that she was a reporter, so at that point i felt like enough was enough. people were calling me colleagues at stanford and leaving messages on their voice mails and on their e-mail saying that they knew my name. clearly people knew my address because they were out in front of my house, and it just -- the mounting pressure seemed like it was time to just say what i
8:04 am
needed to say. >> i'm sorry. i want to ask you one question about the attack itself. you are very clear about the attack, being pushed into the room. you say you don't know quite by whom, but that it was brett kavanaugh that covered your mouth to prevent you from screaming, and then you escaped. how are you so sure that it was he? >> the same way that i'm sure that i'm talking to you right now, just basic memory functions and also just the level of nor epinephrine and ef 1/2 -- epinephrine in the brain, so the trauma-related experience then is kind of locked there whereas
8:05 am
other details kind of drift. >> so what you are telling us is this could not be a case of mistaken identity? >> absolutely not. >> thank you, mr. chairman. >> ms. mitchell for senator hatch. >> thank you, mr. chairman. when we were stopped, you were going to tell us a third correction that you wanted to make on that statement -- or i'm sorry, the letter to senator feinstein? >> it wasn't a correction, but i just wanted to comment on it since we were looking at this letter. but i did see mark judge once at the potomac village safeway after the time of the attack, and it would be helpful with anyone's resources if -- to figure out when he worked there if people are wanting more details from me about when the attack occurred, if we could find out when he worked there, then i could provide a more
8:06 am
detailed time line as to when the attack occurred. >> okay. and that -- so that is not a correction in your statement? >> it's just -- no. >> okay. you also wrote out a handwritten statement for the polygrahper when you took your polygraph, is that correct? >> yes. >> i see corrections on that. i will go on "the washington post" article that was originally published september 16th of this year. >> should i just not look at this for accuracy, or we're just going to leave that be? >> we may come back to it. on "the washington post" article, did you submit to an interview by a reporter with "the washington post" for this article to be written? >> correct. >> okay. and then finally, was the statement that you provided this
8:07 am
morning, i assume that to the best of your recollection that that was accurate? >> that this whole article is accurate? >> no, no, no, the statement that you made this morning? >> yes. >> okay. i want to talk to you about the day that this happened leading up to the gathering. >> okay. >> in your statement this morning, have you told us everything that you remember about the day leading up to that? >> yes. >> let me ask just a few questions to make sure that you've thought of everything. okay? you indicated that you were at the country club swimming that day? that's my best estimate of how this could have happened. >> okay. and when you say best estimate, is that based on the fact that you said you went there pretty much every day? >> mm-hmm. >> is that a yes? >> yes. >> okay.
8:08 am
do you recall prior to getting there -- so i'm only talking about up to the gathering. >> okay. >> had you had anything to drink? >> not at all. >> okay. were you on any sort of medication? >> none. >> okay. do you recall knowing before you went who was going to be at that gathering? >> i recall that expecting that mark judge and leland would be at that gathering. >> okay. do you recall an expectation that brett kavanaugh would be there? >> i don't recall whether or not i expected that. >> okay. now, let's talk about the gathering from the time you arrived until right when you went up the stairs, just that period of time. okay? what was the atmosphere like at the gathering? >> mr. kavanaugh and mr. judge were extremely inebriated.
8:09 am
they had clearly been drinking prior, and the other people at the party were not. the living room was -- >> can i ask you just to follow up on that. when you said it was clear that they had been drinking prior, do you mean prior to the time that you had gotten there or prior to the time they had arrived? >> prior to the time that they arrived. i don't recall who arrived first, though, whether it was me or them. >> okay. please continue. >> okay. so i recall that i could -- i can sketch a floor plan. i recall that it was a sparsely furnished, fairly modest living room, and it was not really a party like the news has made it sound. it was just a gathering that i assumed was going to lead to a party later on that those boys would attend, because they tended to have parties later at night than i was allowed to stay out, so it was kind of a p
8:10 am
pre gathering. >> was it loud? >> no, not in the living room. >> besides the music that you've described that was playing in the bedroom, was there any other music or television or anything like that that was adding? >> no. >> okay. so there wasn't a stereo playing downstairs? >> no. >> senator lahey. >> dr. ford, thank you for being here. mr. chairman, you know, the way to make this inquiry truly credible is to do what we've always done when new information about a nominee comes to light. to use your words this morning, you want to reach the truth. the easy way to do that, ask the fbi to investigate. it's what we've always done. let them investigate, report back to us. the same applies to the serious allegations made by deborah ramirez and julia swetnick.
8:11 am
let's have a nonpartisan professional investigation and then take the time to have these witnesses testify. chairman, you and i were both here 27 years ago. at that time the senate failed anita hill. i said i believed her, but i'm concerned that we're doing a lot less for these three women today. that's my personal view. now, dr. ford, no matter what happens with this hearing today, no matter what happens to this no, ma' nomination, i know and i hear from my own state of vermont, there are millions of victims and survivors out there who have been inspired by your courage. i am. bravery is contagious. indeed that's the driving force behind the me, too, movement, and you sharing your story is going to have a lasting positive impact on so many survivors in our country.
8:12 am
we owe you a debt of gratitude for that, doctor. now, some senators have suggested you were simply mixed up about who assaulted you, and now judge kavanaugh in the white house even promoted a wild theory about a kavanaugh look alike. you immediately rejected that theory as did the innocent man who had been called that look alike. in fact, he sent a letter to this committee forcefully rejecting this theory. content to enter that in the record. >> without objection. >> now, how did you know brett kavanaugh and mark judge, and is it possible that you would mix them up with somebody else? >> no, it is not, and the person that was blamed for the incident is actually the person who introduced me to them originally, so he was a member of columbia country club, and i
8:13 am
don't want to talk about them because i think it's unfair, he is the person that introduced me to them. >> but you would not mix up somebody else with brett kavanaugh, is that correct? >> correct. >> or mark judge? >> correct. >> well, then let's go back to the incident. what is the strongest memory you have, the strongest memory of the incident, something that you cannot forget? take whatever time you need. >> indelible in the hippa campus is the laughter, the uproarious laughter between the two, and they're having fun at my expense. >> you never have forgotten that laughter? you never have forgotten them laughing at you? >> they were laughing with each other.
8:14 am
>> and you were the object of the laughter? >> i was, you know, underneath one of them while the two laughed, two friends having a really good time with one another. >> let me enter into the record a statement by the national task force in domestic violence. >> without objection, so ordered. >> in a letter from 24 members of the house of representatives urging the committee to use the nts trauma-informed approach in questioning dr. ford, and a letter from another 116 members of the house asking to all that has been heard. >> without objection, so ordered and dr. ford has at times been criticized for what she doesn't remember from 36 years. we have numerous experts
8:15 am
including a study by the u.s. army military, science education that lapses of memory are wholly consistent with severe trauma and stress of assault. i ask that that be entered. >> without objection, so ordered. >> and dr. ford, i'll just conclude with this, you do remember what happened, do you not? >> very much so. >> thank you. thank you. >> now, ms. mitchell for senator graham, and then it's my understanding that that's where you'd like to take a break? >> does that work for you as well? >> we're here to accommodate you, not you to accommodate us. >> thank you. i'm used to being kcollegial. >> ms. mitchell for senator graham. >> thank you mr. chairman. you told senator feinstein in your letter that you and four
8:16 am
others were present. you've corrected that today to say it was at least four others. when you were interviewed by "the washington post," you said that there were four boys present at the party, and then in your polygraph statement you say there were four boys and two girls. when you say two girls, was that you and another, or was that two other girls? >> that was me and one other girl. >> and that other girl's name? >> leland. >> leland kaiser now? >> correct. >> okay. so then would it be fair to say at least pj, brett kavanaugh, mark judge, leland ingram at the time and yourself were present and possibly others. >> and one other boy. there were four boys. i just don't know the name of the other boy. >> have you been contacted by anybody saying, hey, i was at that party, too? >> no, i haven't talked with anyone from that party.
8:17 am
>> okay. now, you've been detailed about what happened once you got up the stairs, and so i don't need to go through that again. i'm sorry, go ahead. >> you know, i'm sorry, i just realized that i said something that was inaccurate. i said i hadn't spoken with anyone from the party since that -- i have spoken with leland. >> okay. thank you for correcting that. i appreciate that. you've gone into detail about what happened once you went up the stairs, so i don't feel like it's necessary to go over those things again. >> okay. thank you. >> have you told us everything that you do remember about it? >> i believe so, but if there are other questions, i will -- i can attempt to answer them. >> okay. you said that the music was solely coming from that room, is that correct? >> correct. >> okay. and it was turned up once the three of you were inside that
8:18 am
room, is that correct? >> yes. at some point do you recall it being turned down? >> i don't remember if it was turned down once i was leaving the house. i don't remember. >> okay. likely since i could hear them walking down the stairs very clearly from the bathroom. >> okay. and the bathroom was -- door was closed when you heard this, is that correct? >> i could hear them very clearly hitting the walls going down the stairwell. >> in fact, in your letter you said that they went down the stairs, and they were talking with other people. >> mm-hmm. >> in the house? >> correct. >> were you able to hear that conversation? >> i was not able to hear that conversation, but i was aware that they were downstairs and that i would have to walk past them to get out of the house. >> now, let me make sure we're on the same page. were you not able to hear the conversation or not able to understand the conversation? >> i couldn't hear the conversation. i was upstairs. >> okay. how do you know there was a
8:19 am
conversation? >> i'm just assuming since it was a social gathering people were talking. i don't know. i could hear them talking as they went down the stairwell. they were laughing and. >> okay. in your letter, you wrote both loudly stumbled down the stairwell, at which point other persons at the house were talking with them. does that ring a bell? >> yes, i had to walk past everyone to leave the house. >> okay. >> your letter -- >> maybe i'm not understanding. i'm sorry. >> your next sentence, let me try to clarify this. after you said other persons at the house were talking with them, the letter goes on with the very next sentence, i exited the bathroom, ran outside of the house and went home? >> correct. >> okay. you said that you do not remember how you got home, is that correct? >> i do not remember other than i did not drive home. >> okay. i'm going to show you if
8:20 am
somebody could provide to you a map of the various people's houses at the time, and if you could verify that this is where you were living at the time? >> where i was living at the time? >> yes. >> okay. >> mr. chairman, do we have a copy of these documents? >> you do not have a copy, but if you want one, we can get you one. >> yes, before the questions begin so we can follow the testimony. >> okay. my staff says that we should not provide a copy. >> no, we will provide the copy. >> oh. >> we will provide the copy. >> speak plainly with me, please. >> sure, i'd like to see what she's looking at. >> yeah, you have another 30 seconds now because i was rudely interrupted. >> okay. mr. chairman, senator harris, we do have a blownup copy of this
8:21 am
for the members to view if that's helpful. >> okay. i'm going to put check marks next to homes that i can confirm the correction locations and then an x or question mark when i don't know where these people live. >> i'm only asking you to confirm if that map raaccuratel shows where you live at the time. >> i can't see the street name, but i'm happy to refer to the address or the neighborhood. >> okay. could you tell us that? >> yes, it's river falls. it's near the like -- what is the place called, the naval research center on clara barton parkway. >> okay. was that a house or an apartment? >> it was my parents' home. >> yeah. okay. >> senator durbin. >> mr. chairman i ask consent to enter into the record letters of support for dr. ford from her classmates at holton-arms school, 1,200 alumni of the school, 195 of your colleagues, students and mentors, 1,400
8:22 am
women who and men who attended d.c. schools and 15 members of the yale law school faculty who are calling for a full fbi investigation. i ask consent to enter these into the record. >> without objection, so ordered. >> dr. ford, as difficult as this experience must be, i want you to know that your courage in coming forward has given countless americans the strength to face their own life shattering past and to begin to heal their wounds. by example, you have brought many families into an honest and sometimes painful dialogue that should have occurred a long time ago. i'm sorry for what this has done to you and your family. no one, no one should face harassment, death threats, and disparaging commenting by cheap shot politicians simply for telling the truth. you and your family should know that for every scurrilous charge and every pathetic tweet there have been thousands of americans, women and men who believe you, support you, and thank you for your courage. watching your experience, it's
8:23 am
no wonder that many sexual assault survivors hide their past and spend their lives suffering in pain and silence. you had absolutely nothing to gain by bringing these facts to the senate judiciary committee. the fact that you are testifying here today terrified though you may be, the fact that you have called for an fbi investigation of this incident, the fact that you are prepared to name both judge kavanaugh and eyewitness mark judge stands in sharp contrast to the obstruction we've seen on the other side. the fbi should have investigated your charges as they did in the anita hill hearing, but they did not. mark judge should be subpoenaed from his bethany beach hideaway and required to testify under oath, but he has not. judge kavanaugh, if he truly believes there's no evidence, no witnesses that can prove your case, should be joining us in demanding a thorough fbi
8:24 am
investigation, but he has not. today you come before this committee and before this nation alone. i know you're joined by counsel and family. the prosecutor on the republican side will continue to ask questions to test your memory and voracity. after spending decades trying to forget that awful night, it's no wonder your recollection is less than perfect. a polished liar can create a seamless story, but a trauma survivor cannot be expected to remember every painful detail. that's what senator lahey has mentioned earlier. one question is critical. in judge kavanaugh's opening testimony, which we will hear after you leave, this is what he says. i never had any sexual or physical encounter of any kind with dr. ford. i am not questioning that dr. ford may have been sexually assaulted by some person in some place at some time. last night the republican staff
8:25 am
of this committee released to the media a time line that shows that they've interviewed two people who claim they were the ones who actually assaulted you. i am asking you to address this new defense of mistaken identity directly. dr. ford, with what degree of certainty do you believe brett kavanaugh assaulted you? >> 100%. >> 100%. in the letter when you sent to senator feinstein, you wrote, i have not knowingly seen kavanaugh since the assault. i did see mark judge once at the potomac village safeway where he was extremely uncomfortable in seeing me. would you please describe that encounter at the safeway with mark judge and what led you to believe he was uncomfortable? >> yes. i was going to potomac village safeway, this is the one on the corner of falls and river road, and i was with my mother, and i was a teenager, so i wanted her to go in one door and me go in
8:26 am
the other, so i chose the wrong door because the door i chose was the one where mark judge was -- looked like he was working there and arranging the shopping carts, and i said hello to him, and his face was white and very uncomfortable saying hello back, and we had previously been friendly at the times that we saw each other over the previous two years, albeit not very many times, we had always been friendly with one another. i wouldn't characterize him as not friendly. he was just nervous and not really wanting to speak with me. and he looked a little bit ill. >> how long did this occur after the incident? >> i would estimate six to eight weeks. >> thank you, mr. chairman.
8:27 am
>> before we take a break, i can't let what durbin -- senator durbin said -- by the way, he's my friend, we work on a lot of legislation together. but you talked about the obstruction from the other side. i cannot let it go by what you've heard me say so many times that between july 30th and september 13th there were 45 days this committee could have been investigating this situation and her privacy would have been protected. so something happened here in between on your side that the whole country -- well, not the whole country should have known about it, no, not know about it, we should have investigated it. we'll take a break now for 15 minutes. >> chairman grassley as you heard bringing the proceedings to a break. here in the studio with us we are joined by mimi rocah, form early of the southern district of new york and cynthia oxney
8:28 am
remains with us. cynthia, i'd like to begin with you. your initial reaction to what we've seen? >> my initial reaction is she's very credible and so far the cross-exam has done nothing but increase her credibility. for example, when the prosecutor said to her -- asked her the question about who pushed her into the room on a prior statement, she said i want to correct that because i don't want to put that on judge kavanaugh because i'm not sure. she is so careful and trying so hard to be accurate and fair, and i think this prosecutor is helping, is helping her. >> mimi? >> i agree with cynthia, though i want to clarify, i'm sure cynthia meant that she's not helping her on purpose. >> no. >> but she's doing -- this prosecutor, frankly, as a former fellow prosecutor, i'm embarrassed that this prosecutor, ms. mitchell is participating in this sham
8:29 am
because what is going on here right now is she is trying to put dr. ford on trial for interrupting the flow of judge kavanaugh's nomination. that is really what this feels like. she is not doing a good job of it as cynthia said. i think dr. ford having seen, i don't know, hundreds of witnesses in my career as i know cynthia has as well, she is incredibly credible in trying to remember as many details as she can, and she explained how memory works, not just for trauma. i mean, if the three of us sitting here right now tomorrow were to try and recount what happened here today in our conversation, we would remember the important details. who was sitting at the table, there were bright lights. it was chilly in the room. i would remember that you, brian, were wearing a tie, but if someone asked me tomorrow, what color was the tie, i may not remember. it's a very nice tie, but i may not remember the color. i may not remember how many cameramen were standing to my left. you remember the big points.
8:30 am
that's what's important, and that is what she remembers. she remembers a lot of detail. it is worth noting that what they're trying to pick party here is inconsequential. >> they've tried to turn it into an i.d. case. she's made it very clear, i absolutely know who it was, and so the i.d. case defense is now gone. >> she just said 100%. >> 100%. 100%. and she's also explained in a very credible and interesting way about how when you're the victim, you remember certain the most traumatic parts. i thought when she said in her testimony that was most searing was the laughter. i thought, i mean half of america is crying because they know. you can feel it. it makes your skin -- just makes your hair stand up on your arms that this woman has been living with that laughter in her head for 36 years.
8:31 am
i think it's unconscionable that grassley is putting her through this. that the republicans have not figured out a different way to handle this situation, and they should have had an fbi investigation and this nomination should have been pulled. >> the dichotomy between her -- her humanity and the kind of clunky machinations of the senate. >> it's awful. >> institutionalists who can't get themselves out of that space. >> exactly. and even now that we're here, which i think we've expressed that we don't think we should be at this point, but they didn't figure out a way to have a consistent flow of questioning. you know, they should have had all the republicans agree to have their time go first. frankly more ineffective, but also much harder on a witness to have to go in and out of that mode of questioning, and you know, at this point, cynthia said this, but i'm going to steal it for a second because i wholeheartedly agree, it just -- one of the democrats should really just at this point say there are five witnesses that have come out in the past 15
8:32 am
minutes that need to be subpoenaed here. mark judge, the two other men, one of whom's name she knows, the other one she doesn't know her name, the woman. i know some of them have submitted written statements. that is not a way to get at the truth. these people need to be subpoenaed now. this cannot continue until this is done. i mean, you know -- >> let me just add mark judge's girlfriend who is willing to come forward. they should be subpoenaed. the idea that mark judge, the guy who's in the room they don't bother to bring in, and he's allowed to go, oh, i don't remember anything, and that's acceptable to grassley? who does he think he is putting this woman through this when he doesn't have the decency to do the most basic investigation? it's infuriating. it's infuriating for women all over america. it's an argument for term limits. just go back to iowa. it's ridiculous. >> garrett haake is in the hallway outside these
8:33 am
proceedings with some new reporting. garrett. >> reporter: yeah, brian, we just watched the republican senators from the committee file out across the hallway into the finance committee hearing room stone faced as a group, not responding to reporters except for chuck grassley the chairman saying he knows they have to take this seriously. it was striking to see all these senators who usually come out of any one of these hearings so chatty waiting in a line to get into that room looking each one of them straight ahead as they came out and not lost on them the gravity of what we've heard so far. i just have to say regarding the prosecutor, ms. mitchell, i think so much has been made about republicans choosing to go this route, aware of the optics of this situation of having men do the questioning, but this stopping and starting between emotional testimony and piece by piece going back through, i think is having a similar effect to what they were worried about, making it look like they're trying to pick apart dr. ford's credibility. i can't help but think a few floors up in this building,
8:34 am
susan collins sitting in her office watching this, i don't imagine that any of what she's seeing in terms of how the prosecutor is handling this versus how her own colleagues would have done it is going to make her decision any more favorable to judge kavanaugh. i think all of those problems are still very much there for that small audience of senators who are going to have to make a decision on a vote in this case. >> garrett haake out in the hallway, thank you. mimi it strikes me she is as a witness exceptional for her exceptionalism when she delves into science to answer a question, you're quickly reminded she has a ph.d. in her field, which dovetails with her testimony, and she's exceptional in her ordinariness, her everyday humanity. >> completely. you hit the nail on the head. when she started talking about memory and how it works, it's almost like you're listening to an expert witness, which we call th in court all the time after the victim survivor has testified, and here she's embodying both in
8:35 am
one, which i think makes her both as cynthia said so many people are crying for her, but they're also cheering for her because the strength and the fact that she has the peace of mind to sort of remember the science behind this while she's talking about something so traumatic is actually amazing, and i think, you know, look, for anyone to sit here now after seeing that, anyone, i mean i defy anyone to say that she is lying about this. >> she may be the least packaged witness in the history of televised -- >> that is what makes her so credible. >> for all my anger about forcing her to go through it, i will say this, i think it's empowering for her, and that's been my experience with victims. it's hard to get them ready and get on the stand, but once they've done it, there's a liberation about, okay, i don't have to fight this demon anymore. >> ownership of their story. >> they own it. they've got it. it's open.
8:36 am
it's no longer the dirty little secret that they've been holding and being scared about. i think she will in the end, in the end she will be better for it, but nobody's better at knowing that than her. she's the expert in ptsd. >> and this is no fun. >> and this is awful. >> but to that point, not only will it empower her, but there's no doubt in my mind that if there -- i'm not saying there are, but if there are other people who have stories they are now going to be more empowered about judge kavanaugh to come forward. they will, some have, and you know, it's interesting. the more people that come forward with allegations about him, the more the republicans want to say, oh, see, this is political and this is being done to destroy him, and i don't want to take the focus away too much from dr. ford, but i just want to say that they're not even allowing themselves to consider the possibility that what it means is once one person came forward others felt empowered to do so and that, in fact, they corroborate each other because these different stories, and i
8:37 am
don't know all the facts of all of the stories. i think dr. ford now that we are hearing her testimony, hers is so incredibly credible and powerful. we would have to hear from the other people who claim allegations, but there is a similarity in their stories about a pattern of behavior, about excessive drinking and then mistreatment of women. >> right. >> look at them rolling national catharsis we've witnessed in our own lives. >> it's amazing. i was telling you guys off camera, i had a woman come up to me the other day and talk about how she had heard somebody in college, she had heard a gang rape, and she had vjust suppressed it and she came to me had in tears and wanted to talk about it. >> her motivation for coming forward. she said she was watching the reports, and there were plenty of other qualified candidates. >> that was interesting. >> and she was waiting to see, so it's not like she's saying -- because we all know what that list is. >> i think she said she tried to come forward while there were
8:38 am
other viable candidates. she wasn't targeting him. she wanted for the good of the country -- she said the president and the right people to know before -- you know, before he was selected. >> it's not like she's trying pick somebody who's politically of a different -- of a different genre. she recognized she just wants somebody that isn't brett kavanaugh. >> hallie jackson our white house correspondent is standing by on the hill today. hallie, what do we know about how this is being monitored and received at the other end of pennsylvania avenue? >> reporter: well, we're 30,000 feet above it because the president is on air force one as we speak. he's expected to land in just about ten minutes. we are understanding from our press corps colleagues who are on the plane with the president, specifically our colleagues from bloomberg, that sarah sanders has come back and told reporters the president is watching this. he is watching christine blasey ford, he is watching the hearing on delay from the plane as he makes his way back here to d.c. from new york where he was attending the united nations
8:39 am
general assembly meetings. if the president is watching what he has acknowledged is his favorite channel, the reviews are not great right now for republicans, and that may have an impact in how the president perceives this. we know that he is going to be watching much of the hearing today, as is the vice president. i'm told by one senior administration official that vp has also cleared his schedule so as not to distract from this hearing today. it's impossible to overstate how much pressure is on brett kavanaugh at the moment. and a couple of things to underscore. brett kavanaugh is not in the same room and will not be at any point with christine ford. that is at the request of dr. ford's team. we do not know if he is at his house, when he will get here, but he does have a hold room here inside the building for him to be able to watch the testimony of dr. ford and the questioning if he wants to do that. it is remarkable to watch this process play out, certainly live, senator chuck grassley figuring out sort of how to make these five minute breaks work with rachel mitchell, the prosecutor who is questioning
8:40 am
dr. ford, and it's unfolding for everyone to see. there is no template for this, and that is on display vividly here at the hill today. you also have senator dianne feinstein and democrats trying to put this into context vis-a-vis your discussion of a broader cultural moment putting this in perspective in a moment when many people's perspectives on women's allegations of misconduct have shifted. as for where this goes next, we know ask we expect to hear from the president at some point about all this. he told me yesterday his mind is open to potentially withdrawing the nomination of brett kavanaugh depending on what he hears today. dr. ford for her part clearly emotional. this is clearly raw for her, and again, no template. she has not done this. she has not appeared before a congressional investigator. she has not answered questions from senators before, and now she is doing it in this fashion. brian. >> hallie jackson on the hill. we see republican senators filing back in. more immediately our
8:41 am
conversation has been joined by nicolle wallace here in the studio. prior to your arrival we were saying that dr. ford's exceptionalism is obvious. it exists next to an extraordinary ordinary iness th makes her an absolutely unique witness. >> from the moment "the washington post" hit send on her account, the worse case scenario for kavanaugh and his defenders was what just transpired. the worst-case scenario for his nomination was for dr. ford to do what she just did, to take the stand, to be traumatized, to be credible, and to be -- she was more than sympathetic. she was an unwilling and unenthusiastic witness to the character of brett kavanaugh, and to say this everything that could have gone wrong for brett
8:42 am
kavanaugh has is an understatement. he had to nail the performance piece of this nomination. he didn't do that in the eyes of the president with the fox interview. he had to present himself as the one man accused in the me, too, moment for whom there were no other accusers. that has not happened, and he had to avoid what just happened: he had to avoid christine blasey ford from taking the stand and being as credible as she was. >> this is all part of what we've been discussing. you could hear a pin drop during her opening statement, even though we'd read every word that was something else entirely. >> yes, and that shows, again, the point we were just making. . you can't get at the facts, the truth by papers, by letters people are submitting, by affidavits. people needed to see her, even
8:43 am
if it was the exact same words that were written on the paper. seeing her pain and how genuine it was, seeing her reluctance to be there, this is not a woman who was coming here to get at brett kavanaugh or destroy any one person. she was there to do in her own words her civic duty, as painful as it might be. and again, i challenge anyone who saw that to say that she was not credible, and it shows the importance and the just complete abdication of their job on the part of the senate by not calling other witnesses if they were going to do this, especially without preinterviews and an investigation. >> in fact, to cynthia's point, she's gone out of her way to keep things fair. >> she's gone out of her way. when she said i don't want to push that on him, that he was the one who pushed me, she tried very hard to correct every little record about, no, no, no, pj, this is what i meant when i said bystander, she's been very careful about that. it's impressive.
8:44 am
it's very impressive that the prosecutors' questions have done nothing but help her credibility. >> this was a woman living her life in california just as we watched her come back to the witness table surrounded by these burly security people. that's a visual statement of what has happened to her life as members of the committee file back in. niccole what do you think is happening among members of the team huddled with brett kavanaugh in an adjacent room watching this in realtime? >> i spoke to some of kavanau kavanaugh's allies and people who have been steering him through the process of the interview in preparation for today, and there's a lot of concern. they, i think he is angry. they feel that he has to do a very careful balancing act when he takes the stand, but there is additional angst. there is added, you know, second
8:45 am
guessing. i think if you look back and this nomination fails, there will be a lot of regret that they didn't encourage an fbi investigation, that they didn't say, you know, we were as interested in professor ford. i tell you the part of her story that is most problematic for the folks trying to push through kavanaugh's nomination is that she didn't raise her concerns once he was picked. she raised them when he was on the short list. she didn't want to have this moment arise for the country or for herself or for her family or for brett kavanaugh. so she was trying to avoid this scenario. she was raising red flags when he was simply on a short list. she did things that good citizens are supposed to do, but most of us don't do. she called a tip line. she wrote a letter to her congresswoman. i don't know how many people in this country even, you know, know how to find their congresswoman or find a tip line. she is a model citizen. >> right. you know, if they had taken apart how much we want the investigation because it seems
8:46 am
like that's the right thing to do, it was also the right thing to do for kavanaugh. >> correct. >> he should not have to go through this. this did happen 36 years ago. this should have -- if this had been investigated. >> if you're telling the truth, the fbi is your friend. >> absolutely. and they would have done the interview of mark judge. they would have read his book. there would have been all kinds of backup information, and then they could have said to him privately, judge kavanaugh, you're on the d.c. circuit. your life is perfect. this isn't going to happen for you. and now, quite frankly, there's going to be a reasonable question on whether or not he should even be on the d.c. circuit. >> and the republicans did this to him because they were so stubborn and trump was pushing so hard back because he doesn't like it when people accuse him. trump did this to him and the republicans did this to him. >> that is true. completely agree, although, i will say listening as nicole was saying, listening to her tell how on -- i forget the exact dates now, but she had them
8:47 am
precise. as soon as she saw the list, she contacted her congressman's office. there was sort of this day by day, and it was three and a half weeks later or something, by general kl accumulatiocalculati finally got the letter to senator fieinstein. i understand they were trying to protect her identity, but this needed to move faster than it did. >> i hear the voice of chairman grassley. it looks like we're getting back underway. >> we're going to have a vote at 12:40, so would it be possible for you to go from now until 12:40 without a break? >> yes. >> okay. now it is senator cornyn's time, so proceed ms. mitchell. >> thank you, senator. i have a blowup here to my right of the map that was shown to you. the address that's indicated on here as belonging to your family is what all the property tax records showed as being your
8:48 am
address. >> okay. >> just to put it in perspective, i'd like to show you a further out, a zoomed out picture so that we can put it in perspective. so we can show the greater washington area. of course, you can see the beltway on that, the beltway area. >> okay. and then number three, if we could look at that. we drew a one mile radius around the country club, and then we calculated from the furthest point. >> mr. chairman, again, we don't have these documents. >> no, we're not. that's why she showed three different documents, because they depict three different things, so we'd like to see all three documents, please, so we can follow along. >> proceed, please. >> okay. looking at number -- the third thing here, we calculated the distance from the closest point to your house from a mile radius
8:49 am
of the country club, and then the farthest point. you can see it's 6.2 and of course 8.2 miles. and you've described this as being near the country club, wherever this house was. is that right? >> i would describe it as somewhere between my house and the country club in that vicinity that's shown in your picture. >> okay. and the country club is about 20, a 20 minute drive from my parents' home. >> a 20-minute drive. and of course i've marked as the crow flies. >> yes. >> would it be fair to say that somebody drove you somewhere either to the party or home from the party? >> correct. >> okay. has anyone come forward to say to you, hey, remember? i was the one that drove you home. >> no. >> okay. in your july 6th text to "the washington post" that you looked at earlier, you said that this happened in the mid-80s. in your letter to senator
8:50 am
feinstein, you said it occurred in the early 80s. in your polygraph statement you said it was high school summer in 80s, and you actually had written in and this is one of the corrections i referred to c. later in your interview with the "washington post," you were more specific. you believed it occurred in the summer of 1982 and you said the end of your sophomore year. >> yes. >> you said the same thing, i believe, in your prepared statement. how are you able to narrow down the time frame? >> i can't give the exact date and i would like to be more helpful about the date and if i knew when mark work at the potomac safeway i would be able. i used memories of when i got my driver's license. i didn't drive from that party and to that party. once i did have my driver's license, i liked to drive
8:51 am
myself. >> i would assume the legal driving age was 16? >> yes. >> okay. >> now you've talked about attending therapy. in your text to the "washington post," dated 7/6, that's the first statement we have from you, you put in there, quote "have therapy records talking about it." i want to make sure i understand that. did you already have your therapy records at that time? >> i had looked at them online to see if they existed, yes. >> okay. so this was something that was available to you via a computer like a patient portal? >> no. it was in the office of a provider. >> okay. >> she helped me go through the record to locate whether i had record of this conversation that i had remembered. >> did you show a full or partial set of those marriage
8:52 am
therapy records to the "washington post"? >> i don't remember. i remember summarizing for her what they said, so i'm not quite sure if i actually gave her the record. >> okay. so it's possible that the reporter did not see these notes? >> i don't know -- i don't recall if she saw them directly or if i told her what they said. >> have you shown them to anyone else besides your counsel? >> just the counsel. >> okay. >> would it be fair to say that brett kavanaugh's name is not listed in those notes? >> his name is not listed in those notes. >> would it also be fair to say that the therapist knows we've been talking about say there were four boys in the room? >> it describes the sexual assault and says erroneously by
8:53 am
four boys. so the therapist got the content of it wrong. >> and you corrected that to the "washington post" reporter, correct? >> correct. >> senator whitehouse. >> thank you, chairman. thank you dr. blasey ford. a lot of people are proud of you today. from a prosecutor's eye view, one of the hardest things that we have to do is to speak to somebody who has come forward with an allegation of sexual assault and let them know that we can't provide the evidence to go forward to trial. it's a hard day for the prosecutor to do that. it's such an important consolation to the victim in that circumstance and because it's what you're obliged to do professionally, sincere and
8:54 am
thorough investigation is critical to these claims in a prosecutor's world. it may be the most basic thing that we owe a victim or witness coming forward is to make sure that we give them a full, thorough, and sincere investigation. you have met all of the standards of what i might call preliminary credibility with your initial statement. you have vivid, specific, and detailed recollections. something prosecutors look for. your recollections are consistent with known facts. you've made prior consistent statements, something else prosecutors and lawyers look for. you're willing to and did take a lie detector test. you're willing to testify here, here you are, subject to professional cross examination by a prosecutor.
8:55 am
so you've met any condition any prosecutor could expect to go forward, and yet there has been no sincere or thorough investigation of your claims. you specifically asked for an fbi investigation, did you not? >> yes. >> and are you aware that when the fbi begins investigating, they might find corroborative evidence and they might find exculpatory evidence. >> i don't know what exculpatory evidence. >> help to feel the accused. >> understood, yes. >> so it could go either way? >> yes. >> and you are still not just willing but insistent that the fbi should investigate your recollection and your claim? >> yes, i feel like it would --
8:56 am
i could be more helpful if that was the case in providing some of the details that maybe people are wanting to know about. >> and as we know, they didn't. and i submit that never, never in the history of background investigations has an investigation not been pursued when new, credible, derogatory information was brought forward about the nominee or the candidate. i don't think this has ever happened in the history of fbi background investigations. maybe somebody can prove me wrong, but it's wildly unusual and out of character. in my view, it's a grave disservice to you. i want to take this moment to apologize to you for that and to report to anybody who might be listening, that when somebody is
8:57 am
willing to come forward, even under those circumstances, even having been not given the modicum of courtesy and support of a proper investigation, you've shown yourself particularly proud in doing that. and the responsibility for the decision to have this be, i think, the only background investigation in history to be stopped as derogatory information came forward belongs with 13 men. the president, director ray of the fbi, and the 11 members of the majority of this committee. as to the committee's investigation, the fact that mr. kavanaugh's alleged accomplice hasn't been subpoenaed, has not been examined and cross examined under oath, hasn't been interviewed by the fbi tells you all you need to know about how credible this performance is. the very bare minimum that a person who comes forward is owed
8:58 am
is sincere and thorough investigation. you've been denied that. i will make a personal pledge to you that however long it takes, and whatever forum i can do it, whenever it's possible, i will do whatever is in my power to make sure that your claims get a full and proper investigation and not just this. thank you for being here. >> thank you. >> since these issues come up so many times, i would like to comment the new yorker published. duodays later dr. ford identified herself as a victim in the post article detailing her allegations. i immediately directed my staff to investigate. september 17th, dr. ford consult went on several television shows requesting her client have an opportunity to tell her story.
8:59 am
the same day i scheduled for a hearing for monday, september 24th, giving dr. ford a week to prepare her testimony and come to washington, d.c. on september 17th, committee investigative staff reached out to dr. ford and judge kavanaugh to schedule follow up interviews. judge kavanaugh accepted. the opportunity to speak to the investigators under criminal penalty. dr. ford declined. in his interview on september 17th, judge kavanaugh denied the allegations and requested a hearing as soon as possible. democratic staff refused to participate in that interview. the next day, they contacted mark judge requesting an interview. committee staff learned the identity of two other alleged party interviews and mark judge submitted a statement under penalty of felony denying knowledge of the party described by dr. ford and states he never
9:00 am
saw brett in the manner described by dr. ford. and i can go on and on about that. but we've got to realize that what we have done, in this case, of all the time you go through a background investigation by the fbi then it comes to us. there's always some holes in it we have to follow up on. besides -- >> mr. chairman -- >> we're responding to dr. ford's request to tell her story. that's why we're here. >> mr. chairman. >> miss mitchell. >> mr. chairman, i want to point out that to support what senator whitehouse said in the anita hill case -- >> can we hear from dr. ford. >> george bush ordered that the investigation be opened again. >> miss mitchell, will you proceed for senator lee? >> thank you, mr. chairman. dr. ford, the "washington post"


info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on