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Sen. Feinstein did something stunning to the Kavanaugh accuser at the end of her hearing

Image source: Andrew Harnik-Pool/Getty Images

Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) appeared to betray her star witness against Judge Brett Kavanaugh, the president's Supreme Court nominee, at the end of the hearings for his confirmation Thursday.

Here's what happened

"The controversy over sexual harassment allegations arose when Feinstein revealed that she had knowledge of these claims days before the Judiciary Committee was set to vote on the confirmation.

But as the hearings came to a close Thursday and it became clear that Kavanaugh was to escape unscathed, Feinstein made a stunning claim that many saw as throwing Dr. Christine Blasey Ford under the bus.

Feinstein responded to a extended set of accusations from Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) about the leaked report.

"We also know that the Democrats on this committee engaged in a profoundly unfair process," Cruz said.

"The ranking member had these allegations on July 30th and for 60 days," he explained, "that was 60 days ago, the ranking member did not refer it to the FBI for investigation, the ranking member did not refer it to the full committee for an investigation."

"This committee could have investigated those claims in a confidential way that respected Dr. Ford's privacy," he added.

"Dr. Ford told this committee that the only people to whom she gave her letter, were her attorneys, the ranking member, and her member of Congress," he continued. "And she stated that she and her attorneys did not release the letter, which means the only people who could have released the letter were either the ranking member and her staff, or the Democratic member of Congress, because Dr. Ford told this committee those are the only people who had it."

"That is not a fair process!" Cruz concluded.

Here's the video of Cruz's castigations:

'Well somebody leaked it if wasn't you'

Feinstein asked that she be allowed to respond to Cruz's accusations.

"Mr. Chairman, let me be clear, I did not hide Dr. Ford's allegations. I did not leak her story, she asked me to keep it confidential and I kept it confidential as she asked," Feinstein protested.

"She apparently was stalked by the press, felt that what happened, she was forced to come forward, and her greatest fear was realized," she continued. "She's been harassed, she's had death threats, and she's had to flee her home.

"I was given some information by a woman who was very much afraid," Feinstein continued, "who asked that it be held confidential, and I held it confidential until she decided that she would come forward."

When asked directly if her staff leaked the letter, Feinstein questioned her staff and denied it vehemently.

"The answer is no," Feinstein said. "The staff, they did not."

"Well somebody leaked it if wasn't you," Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) said.

"I did not, I was asked to keep it confidential, and I'm criticized for that too!" she responded.

"It's my understanding that her story was leaked before the letter became public," Feinstein said, "and she testified that she had spoken to her friends about it and it's most likely that that's how the story leaked, and she had been asked by press.

"But it did not leak from us," she said. "I assure you of that."

Here's the video of Feinstein blaming the witness:

Republicans have scheduled a committee vote on the confirmation for Friday, much to the consternation of Democrats who demanded that it be postponed in order that other allegations be investigated.

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