A second woman has accused Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh of sexual misconduct, a claim the judge denies.
In a story published Sunday, NBC News reported that Kavanaugh’s college classmate Deborah Ramirez says Kavanaugh exposed himself to her when they were at Yale University in the 1980s. In an article from The New Yorker, which first reported her claim, Ramirez said that “he exposed himself at a drunken dormitory party, thrust his penis in her face, and caused her to touch it without her consent as she pushed him away,” according to the magazine.
She called for an FBI investigation into the incident. At least two Senate Democratic offices are investigating the claim, according to The New Yorker.
The report comes on the same day the Senate Judiciary Committee said Christine Blasey Ford, who accuses Kavanaugh of sexually assaulting her at a party when they were both in high school, will publicly testify on Thursday. He has also denied Ford’s allegation. Senate Republicans are pushing to confirm the appellate judge to the top U.S. court quickly, despite the accusations against him.
It is unclear now whether the allegations will derail Kavanaugh’s confirmation. A few Senate Republicans signaled Ford’s accusation could sway their vote, though President Donald Trump has publicly defended his Supreme Court choice. If two Senate Republicans vote against Kavanaugh, his nomination will fail.
In a statement, Kavanaugh said that “this alleged event from 35 years ago did not happen.”
“The people who knew me then know that this did not happen, and have said so,” he said. “This is a smear, plain and simple. I look forward to testifying on Thursday about the truth, and defending my good name — and the reputation for character and integrity I have spent a lifetime building — against these last-minute allegations.”
White House spokesperson Kerri Kupec called the accusation “the latest in a coordinated smear campaign by the Democrats designed to tear down a good man.” She added that the White House “stands firmly behind” Kavanaugh.
Senate Democrats, who have already urged their GOP counterparts to slow down Kavanaugh’s confirmation process, are looking into the new accusation.
“This is another serious, credible, and disturbing allegation against Brett Kavanagh. It should be fully investigated,” Sen. Mazie Hirono, D-Hawaii, said, according to The New Yorker.