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Collins Says Yes to Kavanaugh: 'I don't believe that these claims need to be proved beyond reasonable doubt'

Collins commented that the MeToo movement is real, as she and Senator Manchin said they'd vote to confirm. Saturday will be the final showdown.

Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) announced on Friday, "I don't believe that these claims need to be proved beyond reasonable doubt" and "I do not believe these charges can fairly prevent Kavanaugh from the court," referring to the testimony Christine Blasey Ford gave against Brett Kavanaugh last week.

Collins said Kavanaugh was clearly qualified to serve.

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Connie Chung: I Was Sexually Assaulted By My GYN 50 Years Ago

"What made this monster even more reprehensible was that he was the very doctor who delivered me," wrote Chung.

Amid President Trump and Republicans questioning Christine Blasey Ford's remembrance of the alleged sexual assault, but not the exact details of when, women have come out sharing their vulnerable selves and accounts of assault to support Ford.

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Kevin Jackson, a Black Fox News contributor, was fired for his Twitter comments during the hearings about the women who accused Kavanaugh of assault and misconduct.

"#ChristineBlaseyFord academic problems came from her PROMISCUITY!" he wrote on Twitter during the Senate appearance. "Dang girl stop opening your legs and OPEN A BOOK!"

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Christine Blasey Ford Stood on the Shoulders of Anita Hill as She Testified

Black women keep watch and push forward as Ford's day in court proves to be a far cry from 1991.

For every woman of color who watched the hearing today, or has followed any of the drama up to this point, our backs are heavy.

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UPDATE: 2:30 p.m. ET

The Senate Judiciary Committee has ended their questions for Ford. The committee is now on a 45-minute recess.

UPDATE: 2:06 p.m. ET

Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) to Ford: "I believe you. You are a true patriot."

UPDATE: 1:55 p.m. ET

Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.) speaks to Ford:

"This is not a legal proceeding. You're here out of a civic duty. It's more than that. You have received vicious, hateful threats, death threats.

"By your courage, you are affecting the culture of our country. There are dark elements that allow sexual assault that are affecting girls and boys and men and women from corporations, to service in restaurants, etc.

"There are hundreds of thousands of people watching. You are speaking truth that this country needs to understand. And how we deal with survivors that come forward is unacceptable. It allows for the continued [abuse] … This is a lifetime appointment."

Ford: "I wish I could be more helpful, and others could be more helpful, and that we can collaborate to get more information."

UPDATE: 1:45 p.m. ET

Rachel Mitchell, a prosecutor, questions Ford on behalf of Republicans. Mitchell asks questions as if it were a criminal trial. But this is not a criminal trial. This a confirmation hearing.

"Is there a political motivation in your coming forward?" she asked Ford.

"I was trying to get the information to you when there were other qualified candidates," Ford responded.

UPDATE: 1:36 p.m. ET

The hearing has resumed after a lunch break.

UPDATE: 12:45 p.m. ET

UPDATE: 11:40 a.m. ET

Christine Blasey Ford provided her testimony to the Senate Judiciary Committee. Ford testified that it's "absolutely not" a case of mistaken identity that it was Brett Kavanaugh who tried to cover her mouth to prevent her from screaming.

Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) asked her how she could be so sure.

Ford answered: "The same way that I'm sure I'm talking to you right now. Basic memory functions."

Reaction on Twitter regarding Ford's testimony:


ORIGINAL STORY

Christine Blasey Ford's lawyers released the prepared testimony for Thursday's Senate Judiciary Committee hearing about her sexual assault allegations against President Trump's Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh.

"I am here today not because I want to be," Ford will say in her statement. "I am terrified. I am here because I believe it is my civic duty to tell you what happened to me while Brett Kavanaugh and I were in high school."

She describes her accusations in full detail:

"I was pushed onto the bed and Brett got on top of me. He began running his hands over my body and grinding his hips into me. I yelled, hoping someone downstairs might hear me, and tried to get away from him, but his weight was heavy. Brett groped me and tried to take off my clothes.

"He had a hard time because he was so drunk, and because I was wearing a one-piece bathing suit under my clothes. I believed he was going to rape me. I tried to yell for help. When I did, Brett put his hand over my mouth to stop me from screaming."

The hearing will start at 10 a.m. E.T. and Ford will testify first, after opening remarks. After the 21-member committee finishes asking their questions of Ford, theKavanaugh will go next. The proceedings are expected to last into the afternoon.

Read the text of Ford's opening statement below:

Written Testimony of Dr. Christine Blasey Ford

United States Senate Judiciary Committee

September 26, 2018

Chairman Grassley, Ranking Member Feinstein, Members of the Committee. My name is Christine Blasey Ford. I am a Professor of Psychology at Palo Alto University and a Research Psychologist at the Stanford University School of Medicine.

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Kavanaugh Says He Empowers Women But His Misogynistic Past Proves Otherwise

Attorney Michael Avenatti said Julie Swetnick, the third woman to step forward, has evidence of women being targeted with booze and drugs to gang rape them.

UPDATE: 12:30 p.m.: Third Woman Steps Forward to Accuse Kavanaugh of Sexual Misconduct

Announced on Twitter by attorney Michael Avenatti, Julie Swetnick, a Washington resident, and former student at Gaithersburg High School, claims she was the victim of a gang rape in 1982 that Kavnaugh was present for.

"During the incident, I was incapacitated without my consent and unable to fight off the boys raping me," Swetnick said. "I believe I was drugged using Quaaludes or something similar placed in what I was drinking."

She also said, "I have a firm recollection of seeing boys lined up outside rooms at many of these parties waiting for their 'turn' with a girl inside the room. These boys included Mark Judge and Brett Kavanaugh."

"Under no circumstances should Brett Kavanaugh be confirmed absent a full and complete investigation," Avenatti said.

Original story:

Rachel Mitchell, an Arizona prosecutor specializing in sex crimes, will question Brett Kavanaugh and Christine Blasey Ford at tomorrow's hearing.

Four people have since corroborated Christine Blasey Ford's story in signed letters, including her husband, and three friends who said she has mentioned the assault over the last five years.

Letters of support for the second accuser, Debra Ramirez, was signed by 2,200 Yale women and over 670 men. "We Believe Survivors" protests by students and public alike support both women.

But Kavanaugh, in a Fox News interview Monday night, said that he will defend his "lifelong record of promoting equality for the women."

And now there is, potentially, a third female accuser, according to attorney Michael Avenatti — a witness and a victim — to discredit the reputation Kavanaugh says he built.

What reputation was he working on?

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MeToo: Second Kavanaugh Accuser Comes Forward

Democratic Senators call for investigations and increased concern over Kavanaugh being fit to serve; Republicans sat on the story for days and pressured Ford.

Brett Kavanaugh / REUTERS

Deborah Ramirez has come forward detailing an instance of alleged sexual misconduct by Brett Kavanaugh, which dates to the 1983-84 academic year, when Kavanaugh was a freshman at Yale University.

Ramirez is now the second woman to publicly accuse President Trump's Supreme Court justice nominee of sexual misconduct. The first public allegation was made by Christine Blasey Ford.

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Kavanaugh vs. Ford

A tale of a complete lack of diversity causing bad decisions, and shifting opinions nationwide, as well as a teachable moment for corporate America.

Having zero diversity, and by trying to make it "Kavanaugh vs. Ford," the old, white Republican men lost control of the nomination, and made it about them versus all women, a situation that, at best, will be a Pyrrhic victory.

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#WhyIDidntReport is Every Survivor's Take Back the Power Moment

Trump's tweet about Kavanaugh's accuser results in viral backlash. He and his cronies will never understand what they just started.

It was reported on Friday that White House officials were trying to keep President Trump distracted so that he would not respond regarding Brett Kavanaugh's accuser, Dr. Christine Blasey Ford, and the process of which she wants to share her story, and make an impact in a very important historical government move. But, as we all could guess, Trump is incapable of controlling himself.

This time, it's a welcome invite for the backlash that has caught fire on Twitter.

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Old White Republican Bullies Attack Kavanaugh's Accuser and Anita Hill

"You're talking about history … I'd hate to have someone ask me what I did 35 years ago," said Senator Charles Grassley. Maybe somebody should.

REUTERS

Senators Orrin Hatch and Charles Grassley, both now in their mid 80s, were there for the Clarence Thomas hearings, and they bullied Anita Hill. Forty-one Republicans and 11 Democrats voted to give Clarence Thomas a lifetime appointment to the Supreme Court. Now, they're bullying Christine Blasey Ford.

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Cranky Old White Men Passing Hysterical Stories About Kavanaugh's Accuser

The New York Times debunks the top five conspiracy stories: RateMyProfessor, foreclosure, Gorsuch, "Not My President" photo, brother's law firm ... all nonsense.

Brett Kavanaugh / REUTERS

Christine Blasey Ford's accusations that Brett Kavanaugh, a Supreme Court nominee, sexually assaulted her while the two were in high school have Internet conspiracy theorists trying to discredit her by spreading wild rumors.

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​​Kavanaugh Supporter Compares Attempted Rape Claims to 'Rough Horseplay'

The former law clerk for Clarence Thomas joins in the belittling and discrediting of Christine Blasey Ford as she tries to tell her story of sexual assault.

Carrie Severino, spokesperson for the Judicial Crisis Network, questioned Christine Blasey Ford's accusations of Brett Kavanaugh's behavior in high school saying 35-year-old memories could be of just "rough horseplay" instead of attempted rape.

When a CNN anchor challenged Severino's description of Ford's account as a range of behaviors from boorish rough horseplay to attempted rape, Severino backtracked saying it was attempted rape that Ford had alleged.

Severino additionally said that Ford's "perception is one story," seemingly that can be refuted, while the "[Kavanaugh] says it didn't happen at all, so under any interpretation… he says he was not at a party and it didn't happen period."

Judicial Crisis Network has spent at least $4.5 million in ad buys to confirm Kavanaugh, with plans to spend more, and Severino is the former law clerk for Clarence Thomas. Other Kavanaugh allies publicized letters from two former girlfriends to attest to his character.

The discrediting of Ford's story started with Senate Judiciary Chairman Charles Grassley's statement about the allegations being part of "Democrats' tactics" concerning Kavanaugh's confirmation process.

President Trump recently called Kavanaugh a "great gentleman," and said: "I feel so badly for him that he's going through this," Trump said. "This is not a man that deserves this."

He also called the process of investigating the allegation of sexual assault a "little delay," and said it was "ridiculous" to think that Kavanaugh might withdraw his nomination.

Some Republican senators such as Orrin Hatch of Utah and John Cornyn of Texas questioned the credibility of the woman who claims to have undergone sexual assault and subsequent trauma, proven by therapist notes.

Cornyn said he was concerned by "gaps" in the account: "The problem is, Dr. Ford can't remember when it was, where it was or how it came to be."

Hatch said he saw "lots of reasons" not to believe Ford's accusation.

"He is a person of immense integrity," the senator said of Kavanaugh. "I have known him for a long time. He has always been straightforward, honest, truthful and a very, very decent man."

"They just don't get it" became a popular way to describe senators' reaction to sexual violence, wrote Anita Hill, in a recent op-ed in the New York Times.

Hill, who famously was publicly discredited when coming forward about Clarence Thomas, said, "With years of hindsight, mounds of evidence of the prevalence and harm that sexual violence causes individuals and our institutions, as well as a Senate with more women than ever, 'not getting it' isn't an option for our elected representatives. In 2018, our senators must get it right."

Related Story: Old White Republican Bullies Attack Christine Blasey Ford and Anita Hill

Related Story: Cranky Old White Men Passing Hysterical Stories About Kavanaugh's Accuser

Related Story: Woman Accusing Brett Kavanaugh of Sexual Assault Willing to Testify Before Senate Panel

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