The woman whose sexual assault allegation threatens to bring down Donald Trump’s Supreme Court nominee rejected an ultimatum Friday for testifying in the Senate after the US president turned against her, claiming her accusation could not be true.
The increasingly ugly fight over the fate of Trump’s bid to put conservative judge Brett Kavanaugh into the lifetime position on the Supreme Court appeared to be nearing its end game, though still with no clarity on whether the woman at the center of the row will testify.
Christine Blasey Ford, a California professor who says Kavanaugh carried out a violent sexual assault against her when he was 17 and she was 15, insists she is ready to testify under oath before the Senate Judiciary Committee.
However, she rejected a deadline of late Friday imposed by the committee’s Republican leader to agree to his terms for the hearing, which he said should take place next Wednesday.
If she didn’t agree, committee chairman Charles Grassley said, he would go ahead and schedule a vote on confirming Kavanaugh on Monday, but without her testimony.
A statement by Ford’s lawyers carried by CNN asked for one more day to respond, calling the deadline “arbitrary.”