Top Senate Democrats on Thursday sharply criticized the highly-anticipated FBI supplemental report on Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, calling it incomplete and claiming that the Trump administration blocked the federal law enforcement agency from properly doing its job.
Speaking to reporters on Capitol Hill shortly after viewing the confidential report, Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., said that the FBI’s report contained numerous holes and that both the scope and time allotted to conduct the report was too limited.
“The most notable part of the report is what is not in it,” said Feinstein, the ranking Democrat on the Senate Judiciary Committee. “The FBI did not interview Brett Kavanaugh nor did it interview Dr. Christine Blasey Ford.”
Ford, a research psychologist and professor at Palo Alto University, testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee last Thursday that Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her when they were in high school. Kavanaugh denies the accusation.
“What we reviewed today in a very limited time,” Feinstein said. “Looks to be the product of an incomplete investigation.”
She added: “The White House blocked access to millions of documents on Mr. Kavanaugh’s record…it blocked the FBI from doing its job.”
Last week, after bipartisan calls from the Senate, President Trump directed the FBI to re-open the background probe of Kavanaugh to investigate the allegations. The White House requested that the investigation last no more than one week.
“The most notable part of the report is what is not in it...The FBI did not interview Brett Kavanaugh nor did it interview Dr. Christine Blasey Ford.”
Earlier on Thursday, Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, said the FBI found "no hint of misconduct" in its background investigation of sexual misconduct claims against Kavanaugh. The chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee added that it was time for the Senate to vote on the jurist's high-court confirmation.
“I’ve now received a committee staff briefing on the FBI’s supplement to Judge Kavanaugh’s background investigation file," the Iowa lawmaker said Thursday. "There’s nothing in it that we didn’t already know. These uncorroborated accusations have been unequivocally and repeatedly rejected by Judge Kavanaugh, and neither the Judiciary Committee nor the FBI could locate any third parties who can attest to any of the allegations.
“It’s time to vote," Grassley added. "I’ll be voting to confirm Judge Kavanaugh.”
The FBI’s report on its supplemental investigation into Kavanaugh will not be made public, but instead is available for senators and select staffers to view in a secure facility on Capitol Hill. The FBI interviewed nine potential witnesses over the last week in search of possible corroboration of Ford's claim the now 53-year-old Kavanaugh forcibly groped her at high school party in 1982.
“We had many fear that this was a very limited process,” Sen. Chuck Schumer of New York, the Senate Minority leader, said on Thursday. “These fears have been realized.”
Schumer called on Grassley and the White House to make an un-redacted version of the FBI report available for the public to view.