Christine Ford’s lawyer says the Senate Judiciary Committee is trying to “bully” her client by ordering her to decide quickly about when she will come and testify against Brett Kavanaugh.
Debra Katz, the lawyer for Christine Ford, sent a letter to the Senate Judiciary Committee. (The letter is addressed to the counselors in charge of nominations, Ms. Willey and Ms. Davis). You can read the full letter here.
Katz complains that Senator Chuck Grassley, the Republican chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, gave his client an “aribtrary” deadline, ordering her to decide by 10PM tonight whether she’d be available to testify in front of the Senate committee on Wednesday.
Katz wrote, “The 10PM deadline is arbitrary. Its sole purpose is to bully Dr. Ford and deprive her of the ability to make a considered decision that has life-altering implications for her and her family. She has already been forced out of her home and continues to be subjected to harassment, hate mail, and death threats. Our modest request is that she be given an additional day to make her decision.”
Grassley Eventually Agreed to Give Her One More Day — But He Didn’t Sound Happy About It
Late on Friday night, Grassley tweeted a brief and slightly cranky response to Debra Katz’s letter. It read,
Then he followed up with another tweet, saying that all this back and forth was making him feel like he was playing “second trombone” in the orchestra.
In a move which many were calling an ultimatum, Senator Grassley had notified Christine Ford Friday that the Senate Judiciary Committee could be ready to vote very soon on Kavanaugh’s confirmation. Grassley said that if Ford is not willing to testify, the committee will go ahead and vote to confirm on Monday.
“It’s Friday night and nothing’s been agreed to despite our extensive efforts to make testimony possible,” Grassley said in a statement. “I’m extending the deadline for response yet again to 10 o’clock this evening. I’m providing a notice of a vote to occur Monday in the event that Dr. Ford’s attorneys don’t respond or Dr. Ford decides not to testify. In the event that we can come to a reasonable resolution as I’ve been seeking all week, then I will postpone the committee vote to accommodate her testimony. We cannot continue to delay.”
Katz Says Her Client Has Been Receiving Death Threats and Needs More Time to Consider
In her letter to the Senate Judiciary Committee, Katz says that the committee’s request is causing her client undue stress and anxiety, in what is already a stressful and anxious time.
Katz notes that Ford has been receiving death threats and is living in fear. She writes, “By email sent today at 4:01PM, I advised you that Dr Ford had traveled to meet with the FBI about the death threats she had been receiving, and we would need until tomorrow to confer with her and be able to provide you with a well-considered response. Rather than allowing her the time she needs to respond to the take-it-or-leave-it demand you conveyed, you sent us an email at 5:47 PM – which again you gave to the media first — insisting that we accept your invitation for a Wednesday hearing by 10PM tonight.”