All you need to know about the Brett Kavanaugh sex abuse row

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"Laughter - the uproarious laughter between the two", Ford, her voice wavering, told the Senate Judiciary Committee at Thursday's extraordinary hearing. According to the Washington Post, he was riveted and pleased by the judge's Thursday testimony.

While careful not to directly attack Blasey, Kavanaugh practically shouted at the senators, calling the confirmation process a "circus" and "national disgrace" and blaming the questions about his history on a conspiracy to "destroy me" fueled by "pent-up anger about President Trump" and "revenge on behalf of the Clintons".

When asked by the media if the nomination come to the full Senate floor for a vote, Grassley responded "Depends on what happens tomorrow".

Some conservative scholars have suggested Blasey Ford's accusation was a case of mistaken identity, but Blasey Ford, 51, insisted she has a "100 percent" level of certainty that it was Kavanaugh who assaulted her.

"I want to watch, I want to see, "Mr Trump said at a news conference in NY on Wednesday, adding that he was "open to changing my mind".

"I am innocent of this charge", Kavanaugh thundered.

Fellow Republican Senator Lindsey Graham, of SC, said Democrats' treatment of Mr Kavanaugh was the "most despicable thing" he had seen in politics. When they do get to their questions, they're often aimed on letting Blasey Ford stress how deeply the alleged assault has been ingrained in her memory.

The married mother of two, wearing glasses and a sober dark blue suit, appeared nervous but poised as she sat at the witness table, consulting occasionally with her lawyer. She declined to answer questions about how the hearing went or about not being relied on during Kavanaugh's testimony. "Brett groped me and tried to take off my clothes". When it comes to trying to arrive at the accurate recollection of trauma, she said, "there's no study that shows that this setting, in five-minute increments, is the best way to do that". "I tried to yell for help".

"The accusations brought against Judge Kavanaugh are sickening and deserve an independent investigation", Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker tweeted.

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While Republican senators depicted her testimony as part of a partisan attack orchestrated by Democrats, they - and Kavanaugh - were careful not to attack Ford personally. "This is a circus".

He continued: "You may defeat me in the final vote, but you'll never get me to quit".

On a day that turned from gloomy to soggy, hundreds of protesters took first to Capitol Hill and then to the streets of Washington to march onto the Supreme Court, where Brett Kavanaugh, if confirmed by the Senate, would serve as a justice with a lifetime appointment within a matter of days. Democratic senators questioned her directly, but the 11 Republican members on the committee instead chose to have a female sex crimes prosecutor from Arizona question Ford.

Ms Ford replied: "The same way I'm talking to you right now".

Republicans are pushing to seat Kavanaugh before the November midterms, when Senate control could fall to the Democrats and a replacement Trump nominee could have even greater difficulty. "The other night Ashley and my daughter, Eliza, said their prayers and little Eliza, all of 10 years old", Kavanaugh said, pausing to regain his composure, "said to Ashley, we should pray for the woman".

The Republicans hope it will be settled by early next week, while the Democrats are pressing for a delay to allow the allegations against him to be fully investigated.

His face reddening and his voice rising as he wagged his finger at the Democrats on the dais, Graham hissed, "This is the most unethical sham since I've been in politics".

Turning to Kavanaugh, he added: "You're looking for a fair process".

"I think that would be a big mistake", Wallace added.

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