Meet Deborah Ramirez or, as she’s probably known to Senate Republicans, “Oh no!”
As you’re undoubtedly aware, The Senate Judiciary Committee is in the middle of an all-hands-on-deck push to dispatch with allegations leveled by Dr. Christine Blasey Ford, who accused Donald Trump’s SCOTUS nominee Brett Kavanaugh of sexually assaulting her decades ago while the two were in high school.
Kavanaugh vigorously denies the allegations. His alleged co-conspirator in the assault, one Mark Judge, isn’t keen on discussing the matter, although his memoirs mention a “Bart O’Kavanaugh” who apparently had a penchant for vomiting in vehicles and passing out drunk.
A public hearing featuring both Kavanaugh and Ford is scheduled for Thursday.
But you already know all of that. What you didn’t know until now is that Senate Democrats have been busy investigating another allegation of sexual misconduct involving Kavanaugh since last week.
It would be impossible to state this more effectively than Ronan Farrow does in a bombshell New Yorker article out Sunday evening, so Ronan, take it away:
The woman at the center of the story, Deborah Ramirez, who is fifty-three, attended Yale with Kavanaugh, where she studied sociology and psychology. Later, she spent years working for an organization that supports victims of domestic violence. The New Yorker contacted Ramirez after learning of her possible involvement in an incident involving Kavanaugh. The allegation was conveyed to Democratic senators by a civil-rights lawyer. For Ramirez, the sudden attention has been unwelcome, and prompted difficult choices. She was at first hesitant to speak publicly, partly because her memories contained gaps because she had been drinking at the time of the alleged incident. In her initial conversations with The New Yorker, she was reluctant to characterize Kavanaugh’s role in the alleged incident with certainty. After six days of carefully assessing her memories and consulting with her attorney, Ramirez said that she felt confident enough of her recollections to say that she remembers Kavanaugh had exposed himself at a drunken dormitory party, thrust his penis in her face, and caused her to touch it without her consent as she pushed him away. Ramirez is now calling for the F.B.I. to investigate Kavanaugh’s role in the incident. “I would think an F.B.I. investigation would be warranted,” she said.
Got that? According to Ramirez, your next Supreme Court justice got drunk and literally slapped her in the face with his penis.
If you’re wondering whether Ramirez offered a more detailed account of the incident, the answer is (unfortunately) “yes”. According to Ramirez, she and a friend from the Yale women’s soccer team attended a dorm room party and participated in a drinking game, as college freshmen are wont to do at dorm room parties. After being compelled to drink herself into a stupor, she says she was confronted with Kavanaugh’s member, which she initially mistook for a rubber dildo. Here, in her own words, is what happened:
I remember a penis being in front of my face. I knew that’s not what I wanted, even in that state of mind. ‘That’s not a real penis’ [I said]. I wasn’t going to touch a penis until I was married. I was embarrassed and ashamed and humiliated. Brett was laughing. I can still see his face, and his hips coming forward, like when you pull up your pants. Somebody yelled down the hall, ‘Brett Kavanaugh just put his penis in Debbie’s face.’ It was his full name. I don’t think it was just ‘Brett.’ And I remember hearing and being mortified that this was out there.
Needless to say, Kavanaugh is not amused with this account. Here’s what he told the New Yorker in a statement:
This alleged event from 35 years ago did not happen. The people who knew me then know that this did not happen, and have said so. This is a smear, plain and simple. I look forward to testifying on Thursday about the truth, and defending my good name—and the reputation for character and integrity I have spent a lifetime building—against these last-minute allegations.
Kavanaugh’s penis did not immediately respond to our requests for comment.
The New Yorker apparently tried to contact “several dozen” classmates of Kavanaugh and Ramirez. Many didn’t respond, and the ones who did gave conflicting accounts of Kavanaugh’s reputation in college.
At least one classmate said he was “100% sure” that someone told him of the alleged incident and named Kavanaugh as the flasher. A second classmate (now an ER doctor in California) also recalls hearing about the party and about a male student exposing himself to a drunken young woman.
Other classmates cited by the New Yorker denied Ramirez’s claims on the way to defending Kavanaugh.
Meanwhile, Michael Avenatti said Sunday that he is now representing yet another woman who has information on Kavanaugh and the above-mentioned Mark Judge.
“We will be demanding the opportunity to present testimony to the committee and will likewise be demanding that Judge and others be subpoenaed to testify”, Avenatti said, adding that Kavanaugh’s nomination “must be withdrawn.”
Perhaps the most damning part of the New Yorker piece comes in the first paragraph, when Farrow writes the following:
Senior Republican staffers also learned of the allegation last week and, in conversations with The New Yorker, expressed concern about its potential impact on Kavanaugh’s nomination. Soon after, Senate Republicans issued renewed calls to accelerate the timing of a committee vote.
What say you, ‘Liz?
If Republicans have blocked an FBI investigation, bullied Dr. Ford, & tried to "plow right through" & put Brett Kavanaugh on the Supreme Court – all while holding onto credible information about a second sexual misconduct claim – then this isn’t a confirmation. It’s a cover-up. https://t.co/sYuU4Rw7wM
— Elizabeth Warren (@SenWarren) September 24, 2018
Nothing further. For now.