As the White House and Republicans on the Senate Judiciary Committee made clear on Tuesday that they are committed to ramming through Trump Supreme pick Brett Kavanaugh and have no intention of honoring Dr. Christine Blasey Ford's demand for a complete FBI investigation into her sexual assault allegations, Sen. Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii) delivered a scathing condemnation of the GOP's attempt to "railroad" Ford and fast track a confirmation vote.
"The entire array of the White House's power is behind Judge Kavanaugh. It not only places Dr. Blasey Ford at a disadvantage, it victimizes her."
—Sen. Mazie Hirono
"This is what they did to Anita Hill," Hirono, one of four women on the Senate Judiciary Committee, told reporters during a press conference alongside her Democratic colleagues on Tuesday.
As a 2015 video clip showing Kavanaugh bragging about how "what happens at Georgetown Prep stays at Georgetown Prep" went viral overnight, Hirono said it is past time for men nationwide to put an end to the kind of treatment Ford is now receiving.
"Guess who is perpetrating all of these kinds of actions? It's the men in this country," Hirono said. "I just want to say to the men in this country, just shut up and step up. Do the right thing, for a change."
Mazie Hirono: "I just want to say to the men of this country: Just shut up and step up. Do the right thing for a change." (via CBS) pic.twitter.com/pUbyrXeeiu
— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) September 18, 2018
"I expect all of the enlightened men in our country, cause there must be millions of men out there who are enlightened, who also will rise up to say we cannot continue the victimization and the smearing of someone like Dr. Ford," Hirono continued. "And you know what, she is under no obligation to participate in the Republican efforts to sweep this whole thing under the rug, to continue this nomination on the fast track, and to participate in a smear campaign."
We will not stand for the continued victimization and smearing of Dr. Blasey Ford. All of us must work to end this kind of treatment of survivors who bravely share their experiences. pic.twitter.com/kgJtRUK0Hq
— Senator Mazie Hirono (@maziehirono) September 18, 2018
After answering questions from reporters in the Senate hallway on Tuesday, Hirono saw Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.)—who has reportedly been working "feverishly behind the scenes to save Kavanaugh"—passing in a corridor just outside the Senate chamber.
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Hirono's fiery rebuke of GOP tactics and call for a delay in Kavanaugh's confirmation process came after Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa)—the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee—flatly rejected Ford's demand that a full FBI investigation be completed before she gives public testimony on her claim that Kavanaugh attempted to rape her while they were both in high school.
In a statement late Tuesday, Grassley declared that an FBI investigation is unnecessary and that Monday's scheduled hearing will take place whether Ford testifies or not. In remarks to reporters earlier on Tuesday, President Donald Trump also said he doesn't want the FBI to investigate Ford's allegations.
Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee firmly sided with Ford on Tuesday, echoing her demand for an FBI probe.
We should honor Dr. Blasey Ford’s wishes and delay this hearing. A proper investigation must be completed, witnesses interviewed, evidence reviewed and all sides spoken to. Only then should the chairman set a hearing date.
— Sen Dianne Feinstein (@SenFeinstein) September 19, 2018
While Kavanaugh has said he intends to testify during Monday's scheduled hearing, his friend Mark Judge—who Ford says was in the room when Kavanaugh allegedly attempted to rape her—insisted in a letter to the Senate Judiciary Committee on Tuesday that he has "no memory" of the incident Ford described and will not testify publicly.
After coming forward with her incredibly serious allegations against Kavanaugh, Ford has reportedly faced death threats, hired private security for protection, and moved out of her home due to safety concerns.
"The entire array of the White House's power is behind Judge Kavanaugh. It not only places Dr. Blasey Ford at a disadvantage, it victimizes her," Hirono wrote in a tweet on Tuesday. "No survivor of sexual assault should be subjected to death threats and concern about the safety of their family."