U.S. Senator Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, said now that the supplemental FBI investigation is complete it is time to vote on Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh. He stated that the information provided by the FBI did not corroborate the allegations made against Kavanaugh.
To that end, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky) has filed for a vote on cloture on Friday. A final vote is expected Saturday or Sunday.
Grassley released a statement on Thursday morning:
I’ve now received a committee staff briefing on the FBI’s supplement to Judge Kavanaugh’s background investigation file. 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. There’s also no contemporaneous evidence. This investigation found no hint of misconduct and the same is true of the six prior FBI background investigations conducted during Judge Kavanaugh’s 25 years of public service.
I trust that the career agents of the FBI have done their work independent of political or partisan considerations. That’s exactly what senators from both sides asked for. Now it’s up to senators to fulfill their constitutional duty and make a judgment.
No one is on trial and the Senate is not a courtroom. But our nation’s tradition of fairness still applies. A presumption of innocence is how the American justice system works, and it should remain our guidepost in the Senate. Abandoning that principle would cut a sad path for the Senate as an institution.
Here is what we know: Judge Kavanaugh’s former clerks, colleagues friends from high school to the present acclaim his personal integrity and character. His neighbors and community members recognize his positive contributions to their schools and churches. And his fellow members of the legal profession know him to be a thoughtful and respectful jurist. His judicial record shows that he is fair and rules impartially and without prejudice.
Fundamentally, we senators ought to wipe away the muck from all the mudslinging and politics and look at this nomination with clear eyes. Judge Kavanaugh is one of the most qualified nominees to ever come before the Senate. He’s served with distinction for twelve years on the nation’s most important circuit court and dedicated himself to serving the American public. We know that he will be an excellent justice because he’s been an excellent judge.
It’s time to vote. I’ll be voting to confirm Judge Kavanaugh.
FBI completed the supplemental investigation requested by the Senate Judiciary Committee last Friday and ordered by the President. The White House delivered the updated file to the committee at approximately 2:30 am (ET).
Under a 2009 memorandum of understanding between the White House and the Senate Judiciary Committee all background investigation (BI) files, the file and the information therein is held confidential. All Senators and a minimal number of committee staffers can have access to the information within the file. Grassley’s office noted this is how files have been handled under several administrations.
Grassley announced that as a security and confidentiality precaution, Kavanaugh’s background investigation file will be held in the Office of Senate Security. Due to concerns over recent leaks of sensitive or confidential information, the legal restrictions imposed by the Privacy Act and the expected interest among senators to review the information, the use of the Senate’s secure space will best facilitate access for S. The use of the secure space, in this case, will satisfy the physical custody requirements outlined in the memorandum of understanding.