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Trump defends Justice Brett Kavanaugh as he faces fresh sexual misconduct allegations

A former Yale classmate of Kavanaugh alleged that the jurist exposed himself at a freshman year party.

Brett Kavanaugh
Brett Kavanaugh
Image: Ken Cedeno via PA Images

US PRESIDENT DONALD Trump has mounted an angry defence of Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh as the controversial judge faced calls for an investigation over fresh allegations of sexual misconduct.

Trump blasted the media and “Radical Left Democrats” after a former Yale student alleged that Kavanaugh – one of the most senior judges in the USA – exposed himself at a freshman year party.

“Now the Radical Left Democrats and their Partner, the LameStream Media, are after Brett Kavanaugh again, talking loudly of their favorite word, impeachment,” Trump tweeted.

“He is an innocent man who has been treated HORRIBLY. Such lies about him. They want to scare him into turning Liberal!”

The latest allegation in The New York Times came after Kavanaugh denied sexual misconduct accusations levelled against him by two women during his confirmation to the Supreme Court last October.

The allegation surfaced during a 10-month investigation by Times reporters Robin Pogrebin and Kate Kelly, and features in their upcoming book, The Education of Brett Kavanaugh: An Investigation.

On 14 September the New York Times published an extract from the book, which focused on the story of Deborah Ramirez, who went to Yale and claimed that in her freshman year, she and some classmates had been drinking when: 

she says, a freshman named Brett Kavanaugh pulled down his pants and thrust his penis at her, prompting her to swat it away and inadvertently touch it. Some of the onlookers, who had been passing around a fake penis earlier in the evening, laughed.

Kavanaugh denies her claims, The claims “became a flash point” during Kavanaugh’s confirmation process last year, when he was also dealing with other sexual misconduct allegations from Christine Blasey Ford.

The authors say that at least seven people heard about the Yale incident long before Kavanaugh was a federal judge.

In the extract, the authors say they also uncovered a previously unreported story about Kavanaugh in his freshman year. These allegations came from Max Stier, who runs a non-profit in Washington. His concerns were reported to the FBI during Kavanaugh’s 2018 confirmation process but not investigated, according to the Times.

Stier said he saw his former classmate “with his pants down at a different drunken dorm party, where friends pushed his penis into the hand of a female student”.

Stier has not spoken publicly about the incident but his story was corroborated by two officials, the Times said. The female student declined to be interviewed and friends say she does not recall the episode, said the Times. Kavanaugh declined to answer questions about Stier’s account.

It is the latest in a string of accusations of unwanted sexual contact or assault against Kavanaugh since Trump nominated him to the Supreme Court.

‘Shame’

Christine Blasey Ford testified before Congress that Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her in the 1980s, while Deborah Ramirez told The New Yorker that Kavanaugh had waved his penis in front of her face at a 1980s dormitory party.

Trump called on Kavanaugh to take legal action over the latest claims, suggesting also that the Department of Justice should intervene on the judge’s behalf and “come to his rescue”.

But Democrats seeking to be Trump’s opponent in the 2020 election said the judge should be investigated – and three of them called for his impeachment.

“These newest revelations are disturbing,” Senator Elizabeth Warren said on Twitter.

“Like the man who appointed him, Kavanaugh should be impeached.”

Senator Kamala Harris, whose tough questioning of the high-court nominee during his confirmation hearings raised her public profile, tweeted that Kavanaugh had “lied to the US Senate” and “must be impeached”.

Julian Castro echoed that charge, adding, “Congress should review the failure of the Department of Justice to properly investigate the matter”.

Republican Senator Ted Cruz dismissed the new allegation, however, as “the obsession with the far left with trying to smear Justice Kavanaugh by going 30 years back with anonymous sources”.

© AFP 2019 

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