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Commentary: Let’s stop pretending the accusation against Brett Kavanaugh is credible

Dr. Christine Blasey Ford accused Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh of sexually assaulting her at a party 36 years ago. (SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images)

The memo by Rachel Mitchell, the Arizona sex crimes prosecutor who interviewed Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh’s accuser, Dr. Christine Blasey Ford, last Thursday on behalf of Senate Republicans, is absolutely devastating for Senate Democrats.

In her analysis, Mitchell — who was once named as the Sexual Assault Prosecutor of the Year by Arizona Gov. Janet Napolitano, former President Barack Obama’s secretary of homeland security — not only argues that it’s hard to tell whether Dr. Ford’s allegations are true, she highlights major inconsistencies in her story that raise serious concerns.

Mitchell wrote, “Here is my bottom-line: A ‘he-said, she-said’ case is incredibly difficult to prove. But this case is even weaker than that.” She added, “I do not think that a reasonable prosecutor would bring this case based on the evidence before the Committee. Nor do I believe that this evidence is sufficient to satisfy the preponderance-of-evidence standard.”

This means that in Mitchell’s professional opinion as a 25-year veteran of sex crimes prosecutions, Dr. Ford’s allegation that Kavanaugh assaulted her while they were teenagers is so unbelievable that it fails to meet even the lowest thresholds to demonstrate culpability within our legal system because they just don’t make sense. Indeed, the gaps and inconsistencies in Dr. Ford’s testimony are shady, irreconcilable, and defy logic.

For instance, the most glaring issue is that Dr. Ford provided four different dates for when she was attacked within the span of a couple of weeks:

● According to the Washington Post, notes from Dr. Ford’s 2013 therapy session, which she refused to turn over to Senate investigators, list the attacks as having occurred when she was in her “late teens.”

● Dr. Ford was born in November 1966. Her “late teens” would be consistent with a July 6, 2018, text message to a Post reporter where she describes the alleged attack as happening in the mid-1980s.

● For reasons that remain unclear, three weeks later, in a July 30th letter to Sen. Dianne Feinstein, Dr. Ford then changed the date of the attack to the “early 1980s.”

● One week later, Ford takes a polygraph test with her lawyers where she was asked before-hand to describe the events. In that statement, she first wrote that the alleged attack occurred in the early 1980s. But then something strange happens. As you can see, she scratched out “early 1980s” and left it as “1980s.”

● Finally, by mid-September, in her first on-the-record interview, Ford narrowed the date of the attack to the “summer of 1982.”

To recap: Presumably for decades, and certainly as of 2013 and early July, Ford claimed that her alleged attack happened in the mid-1980s when she was in her late teens. Then, after consulting with friends and lawyers, the date of the attack changed to 1982 until she homed in on the summer of that year.

Why is this important? If the attack happened when Ford was in her late teens (1984-1986), as her therapist’s notes and correspondence with the Washington Post state, Brett Kavanaugh would have been 300 miles away from her as a full-time student at Yale University. Furthermore, as Ford herself noted in her testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee, she began college at age 17 in Chapel Hill, meaning she spent much of her “late teens” in North Carolina—far away from the Maryland suburbs where she claims Kavanaugh attacked her.

There are additional contradictions in Ford’s account that undermine her case, including several changes to the number of boys who attacked her and odd memory gaps. But her timeline discrepancies may be the most damaging since the first dates she provided could exonerate Brett Kavanaugh as her assailant by severely narrowing, or even eliminating, his window of opportunity to have committed the crime.

Brett Kavanaugh appears to have been the rare breed of student who could party and play sports without missing a beat in the classroom, but he certainly did not defy the laws of physics. Unless the FBI finds groundbreaking evidence this week that supports her allegation, Dr. Ford’s testimony should be considered as simply not credible — and the Senate should proceed to ascend Judge Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court.

One last thing…
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