Wed10242018

Last updateWed, 10 Oct 2018 4pm

Politics

White House Limits Kavanaugh Probe

default article imageThe Trump administration has prevented the FBI from investigating Julie Swetnick’s allegations of sexual assault against U.S. Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh, multiple White House officials briefed on the matter told NBC News on Saturday, Sept. 29.

Multiple White House officials, under anonymity, confirmed to NBC News that the White House counsel’s office has given the FBI a list of specific witnesses they are permitted to interview in the reopened background investigation into Kavanaugh, an unexpected method which deviates from Senator Jeff Flake’s (R-Arizona) request following the Senate Judiciary Committee’s vote for floor confirmation last Friday, Sept. 28.

Under the administration’s restrictions, FBI investigators are not permitted to obtain information about witness and co-conspirator Mark Judge’s employment at the supermarket where Dr. Blasey Ford testified she saw him working which, “would [otherwise] help better narrow the date of the assault she testified about to the Senate Judiciary Committee,” said Katherine Parkin, Ph.D., a professor of history and gender studies.

The FBI is also prohibited from investigating Kavanaugh’s multiple accounts of drinking in college, which Parkin said, “will of course have tremendous bearing on the testimony provided by his second accuser, Deborah Ramirez, and her account that he stuck his penis in her face, as they hung out in a group of friends at Yale.”

Because of the recent limitations on the FBI’s probe, Parkin said, “The sincere call for a FBI investigation, sparked by two women [Maria Gallagher and Anna Maria Archilla] who confronted Senator Flake about their experience having been sexually assaulted, has instead immediately devolved into a farce.”

“Instead of the ‘free reign’ that [Trump] promised, he lied and instead dictated a dramatically narrower scope of who and what they could investigate. Predicated on his disdain for the lawyer of the third victim who has come forward publicly, Julie Swetnick, the President disallowed the FBI from doing a complete and thorough investigation,” Parkin continued.

“Not only are they not able to speak to Swetnick, they have in fact been instructed to only interview a narrow list of approved individuals,” she concluded.

The re-opened background investigation was granted to take place over the course of no more than one week, and the Senate will hold a floor vote no later than this Friday, Oct. 5 to determine Kavanaugh’s confirmation.

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