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Accuser of Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh agrees to Senate testimony on Thursday in an open hearing

Key Points
  • Christine Blasey Ford, a California professor at the center of a sexual assault accusation against U.S. Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, has agreed to testify to representatives of the Senate Judiciary Committee on Thursday at 10am
  • "Despite actual threats to her safety and her life, Dr. Ford believes it is important for Senators to hear directly from her about the sexual assault committed against her," her lawyers said in a statement.
Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh appears before the Senate Judiciary Committee during his Supreme Court confirmation hearing in the Hart Senate Office Building on Capitol Hill September 4, 2018 in Washington, DC. 
Drew Angerer | Getty Images

The Senate Judiciary Committee will on Thursday hear the testimony of Christine Blasey Ford, a California professor who has accused U.S. Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh of a decades-old incident of sexual assault.

Following protracted negotiations over whether and how Ford would appear before Senate representatives, the details came as her lawyers announced on Saturday she had agreed in principle, even as they blasted the committee leadership for "bullying" their client.

As a result of Ford's testimony, a planned committee vote on Kavanaugh's nomination has been postponed, according to a statement from the office of Judiciary Committee Chair, Iowa's Charles Grassley.

Ford's agreement brings an end to a stalemate that lasted for more than a week, and overshadowed President Donald Trump's second selection for a high court vacancy. Meanwhile, a polarizing public debate — fueled largely by the "Me Too" movement of sexual harassment survivors — has converged with the politics surrounding the Supreme Court's delicate ideological balance.

"We committed to moving forward with an open hearing on Thursday, Sept 27 at 10:00 am," wrote Ford's lawyers, in a statement. "Despite actual threats to her safety and her life, Dr. Ford believes it is important for Senators to hear directly from her about the sexual assault committed against her."

The Senate's oversight body and Ford's legal representatives had been locked in a standoff about the contours of her appearance before the committee. Indeed, several key details remained unresolved on Sunday, as Ford's lawyers raised questions about whether other witnesses would be asked to appear, or who on the GOP side will be grilling Ford.

"We were told no decision has been made on this important issue, even though various senators have been dismissive of her account, and should have to shoulder their responsibility to ask her questions," Ford's representatives said. "We look forward to hearing back from the majority staff as soon as possible on these important matters."