The Senate Judiciary Committee will hold a public hearing on Sept. 24, at which Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh and a woman who alleges that he sexually assaulted her will have the opportunity to testify under oath about the events in question, Republican senators on Capitol Hill confirmed late Monday afternoon.
"As I said earlier, anyone who comes forward as Dr. Ford has done deserves to be heard," said Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, on Monday. "We will hold a public hearing Monday to give these recent allegations a full airing," he said.
"Judge Kavanaugh looks forward to a hearing where he can clear his name of this false allegation. He stands ready to testify tomorrow if the Senate is ready to hear him," White House deputy press secretary Raj Shah said in a statement Monday afternoon.
Kavanaugh's nomination has been in turmoil since the explosive allegations by Christine Blasey Ford, who said that President Donald Trump's nominee to the high court sexually assaulted her at a party when they were both teenagers.
Kavanaugh has categorically denied Ford's allegation, calling it "completely false." In a statement Monday, Kavanaugh said, "I have never done anything like what the accuser describes—to her or to anyone."
Ford's allegations against Kavanaugh became public on Sunday, just days before the Senate Judiciary Committee was scheduled to vote on Kavanaugh's confirmation.
Until now, the confirmation had seemed all but assured, with Kavanaugh expected to be confirmed with both Democratic and Republican votes. But now, everything appears to have changed.
Republican senators spent much of the day Monday assessing whether Ford's allegation, first detailed by The Washington Post, would imperil Kavanaugh's ability to gain a majority of votes on the Judiciary Committee or in the full Senate.
As it became clear Monday afternoon that Kavanaugh would not have the votes he needed unless senators were satisfied that Ford had been given an opportunity to testify, and Kavanaugh an opportunity to respond, it also became obvious that their plan to push Kavanaugh through the committee on Thursday would need to be revised.
Kavanaugh, meanwhile, spent most of Monday at the White House, where he met with White House counsel Don McGahn, who encouraged him to fight the allegations and refuse to withdraw his nomination.