Senate Judiciary Committee Receives FBI Background File on Kavanaugh


Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh arrives for testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee the second day of his Supreme Court confirmation hearing on Capitol Hill September 5, 2018 in Washington, DC. Kavanaugh was nominated by President Donald Trump to fill the vacancy on the court left by retiring Associate Justice Anthony Kennedy.

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Members of the Senate Judiciary Committee will begin reviewing the supplemental FBI background file for Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh Thursday, just hours after receiving the highly anticipated report.

The file was delivered to the committee in a sealed box at 2:30 a.m. ET, according to a committee source, who also told CNN that it was placed in a vault that already holds Kavanaugh’s six other background investigation reports.

Sen. Chuck Grassley, the Republican chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, tweeted early Thursday morning that the committee had received the report and that members of the committee would have equal access to it.

“Supplemental background file for Judge Kavanaugh has been received by @senjudiciary Ranking Member Feinstein & I have agreed to alternating EQUAL access for senators to study content from additional background info gathered by non-partisan FBI agents,” Grassley tweeted.

The White House also said earlier Thursday that they received the FBI’s file, which they subsequently sent to the Senate. In a statement, White House spokesman Raj Shah said: “With Leader McConnell’s cloture filing, Senators have been given ample time to review this seventh background investigation.”

“This is the last addition to the most comprehensive review of a Supreme Court nominee in history, which includes extensive hearings, multiple committee interviews, over 1,200 questions for the record and over a half million pages of documents,” the statement read. “With this additional information, the White House is fully confident the Senate will vote to confirm Judge Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court.”

Senators will review the FBI’s report Thursday before a procedural vote on Kavanaugh’s nomination on Friday that would possibly lead to a final vote as early as the following day.

Grassley and Feinstein agreed Wednesday that Republican and Democratic senators would be allotted equal time slots for briefings, according to a committee source. The first briefing is scheduled for Republican senators at 10 a.m. ET.

Kavanaugh’s nomination hangs in the balance a week after Christine Blasey Ford testified to the Senate Judiciary Committee about her allegation of sexual assault against Kavanaugh when they were both in high school. Both Kavanaugh and the White House have repeatedly denied the allegation.

A further FBI investigation into Kavanaugh’s background was put into motion last week when Republican Sen. Jeff Flake voted to move Kavanaugh’s nomination out of the committee but called for the FBI to further investigate Ford’s claims.

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