Senator Sheldon Whitehouse asks Attorney General Merrick Garland to help the Senate investigate the FBI’s 2018 background check of Brett Kavanaugh. Whitehouse alleges that the FBI may have fabricated or severely limited its investigation for political reasons.
Kavanaugh was accused of sexual assault by Christine Blasey Ford ahead of his Supreme Court confirmation. Other allegations of misconduct followed. The FBI claimed to have investigated the allegations, but Democratic senators pointed out issues with the probe. For example, neither Kavanaugh nor Ford were ever interviewed by agents.
In his letter to Garland, Whitehouse emphasizes that multiple witnesses to the assault wanted to share their accounts with the FBI but were unable to reach anyone at the bureau. Whitehouse and others believe that the FBI never assigned someone to accept or gather evidence.
The bureau eventually introduced a pathway to provide tips, but the agency has provided no evidence that submissions to the tip line were ever reviewed or investigated.
In the letter, Sheldon also criticizes FBI Director Christopher Wray. In a July 2019 oversight hearing, Senators asked Wray questions about the Kavanaugh investigation that “remain unanswered today.”
When Kavanaugh was confirmed to the Supreme Court, Sen. Patrick Leahy warned the country that the Senate is no longer “an independent branch of government.” It’s an extension of the Trump White House. Maybe the same could be said of the FBI.
It’s possible that the FBI was pressured by the Trump administration to not investigate Kavanaugh, similar to how Robert Mueller was blocked from fully investigating Donald Trump. It’s also possible but unlikely that the FBI’s hesitation was related to Kavanaugh’s indirect ties to Jeffrey Epstein. The federal government has a history of protecting Epstein and the people surrounding him.
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