WASHINGTON — President Trump is trying to save his Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, who is facing allegations of sexual misconduct. He ordered an FBI investigation Friday after Sen. Jeff Flake, a crucial vote, called for a week-long delay on a vote in order for an investigation to take place.
In a statement, Mr. Trump said “this update must be limited in scope and completed in less than one week.”
During testimony, Kavanaugh’s accuser Dr. Christine Blasey Ford said she “would be happy to cooperate with the FBI.”
Democrats and Ford have repeatedly demanded an investigation. On Friday, Ford’s lawyer said she “welcomes this step in the process.”
Meanwhile, Kavanaugh said Friday, “I’ve done everything they have requested and will continue to cooperate.” But during the hearing one day earlier, he would not answer if he wanted an FBI probe, too.
President Trump is also weighing in on Ford’s testimony.
“I thought her testimony was very compelling and she looks like a very fine woman to me,” he said. “I thought that Brett’s testimony likewise was really something that I haven’t seen before. It was incredible.”
The White House will set parameters for the investigation, including whether FBI agents can interview two other women accusing Kavanaugh of misconduct. Also unclear is whether agents will talk to Mark Judge, an alleged witness to the Ford assault who says he is willing to cooperate.
“You have the three interviews, you may have two or three others if there is some allegation that others might have some memory of it,” said Fran Townsend, former Homeland Security adviser and CBS News contributor. “This is a couple of days, this is not weeks or months.”
The FBI will put its findings in writing for the White House counsel, then relay the report to senators. Law enforcement officials said if the investigation is limited to Ford’s case, seven days is enough time. Because this is not a criminal investigation, no one can be forced to cooperate.