Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh may have misled the Senate about when he first knew about Deborah Ramirez’s allegation that he pushed his penis in her face while she was intoxicated during a party in their freshman year at Yale.
During Kavanaugh’s Senate testimony last week, Sen. Orrin Hatch asked Judge Kavanaugh, “When did you first hear of Ms. Ramirez’s allegations against you?”
Kavanaugh replied, “In the last — in the period since then, the New Yorker story.”
Kavanaugh appeared to be saying that he first learned of the charges after they appeared in The New Yorker on September 23.
According to text messages obtained by NBC News, in the days leading up to The New Yorker publishing its explosive article, Kavanaugh and his team reached out to former classmates asking for help in refuting the claim.
Some of the witnesses were reportedly contacted by people working on Kavanaugh’s behalf as early as July, according to text messages one witness has shared with the FBI.
This demonstrates to a near-certainty that Kavanaugh knew about the incident weeks before the story came to light. It is possible he had somehow heard about false charges being circulated in advance, worked to refute them, and then misled the Senate about when he heard about them. An alternative, more direct explanation would be that he worked to refute the charge because he knew about it from having actually done what he was accused of.
Kerry Berchem, a mutual friend of Kavanaugh and Ramirez, has asked the FBI to investigate the text messages that Kavanaugh and his allies sent to friends before her story was made public, NBC News reported Monday.
NBC reported that in one text message between Berchem and Karen Yarasavage, a friend of Kavanaugh, Yarasavage said that Kavanaugh tried getting her to publicly defend him.
Berchem told NBC News in a statement that she hasn’t drawn conclusions about the messages but believes “they merit investigation by the FBI and the Senate.”
“I understand that President Trump and the U.S. Senate have ordered an FBI investigation into certain allegations of sexual misconduct by the nominee Brett Kavanaugh. I have no direct or indirect knowledge about any of the allegations against him,” Berchem said.
“However, I am in receipt of text messages from a mutual friend of both Debbie and mine that raise questions related to the allegations. I have not drawn any conclusions as to what the texts may mean or may not mean but I do believe they merit investigation by the FBI and the Senate,” she added.