McConnell sets vote Friday to move Kavanaugh confirmation forward

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The FBI background report investigation on Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh was handed to the White House and passed on to the Senate overnight, while Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., arranged a key vote on the process for Friday.

If Friday’s vote passes, there will be up to 30 hours of debate followed by a final confirmation vote on Kavanaugh, perhaps as early as Saturday.

A source briefed on the FBI’s completed background investigation told NBC News that the FBI contacted 10 people and interviewed nine of them. It was not immediately clear why the 10th was not interviewed. The source said the White House concluded the interviews do not corroborate sexual misconduct allegations against Brett Kavanaugh.

Dr. Christine Blasey Ford has accused Kavanaugh of attempting to remove her clothes and stifling her screams at a party when they were both in high school in the early 1980s. Kavanaugh has denied the claims.

After a dramatic day of testimony at a Senate hearing last week, Republican Sen. Jeff Flake of Arizona requested an additional FBI supplemental background report, which the White House approved.

The supplemental background investigation report is expected to contain “302” forms of the FBI interviews, which summarize the contents of the interviews, aides and senators have said.

The FBI, which has spent only a few days on the investigation, will not be submitting a conclusion as to who’s telling the truth in the case.


Ford’s attorneys said in a statement Wednesday after McConnell’s action that the FBI supplemental investigation did not include an interview with Ford or others.

“An FBI supplemental background investigation that did not include an interview of Dr. Christine Blasey Ford — nor the witnesses who corroborate her testimony — cannot be called an investigation,” they said. “We are profoundly disappointed that after the tremendous sacrifice she made in coming forward, those directing the FBI investigation were not interested in seeking the truth.”

The FBI supplemental background investigation materials were delivered to the White House Wednesday night, it said in a statement.

Sources briefed on the schedule said Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, will be the first to see it at 8 a.m., followed by ranking Democratic member Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., at 9 a.m.

The other GOP members on the Judiciary Committee will get it at 10 a.m., and the Democrats on the panel can view the report an hour later.

Others senators will have access to the report afterward.

On the Senate floor Wednesday night, McConnell said it was the seventh time the FBI had looked into Kavanaugh’s background, “and this information comes on top of what has already been one of the most thorough and most exhaustive senate reviews of any Supreme Court nominee in the entire history of our country.”

But questions have been raised about whether limits were placed on the scope of the FBI supplemental background investigation.


More than 40 people with potential information into the sexual misconduct allegations against Kavanaugh have not been contacted by the FBI, according to multiple sources that include friends of both the nominee and his accusers.

President Donald Trump weighed in on the nomination of Kavanaugh Wednesday night, tweeting, “Wow, such enthusiasm and energy for Judge Brett Kavanaugh,” and: “Something very big is happening. He is a fine man and great intellect. The country is with him all the way!”

Trump was criticized after he mocked Ford at a campaign-style rally in Mississippi on Tuesday.

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