Hirono Won’t Say if She Finds Swetnick’s ‘Gang Rape’ Accusations Against Kavanaugh Credible

• September 27, 2018 10:39 am


Sen. Mazie Hirono (D., Hawaii) would not say Thursday if she believed an allegation against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh that he was involved in drugging and ‘gang raping' girls at parties in the early 1980s.

Julie Swetnick emerged Wednesday to say she observed Kavanaugh drunkenly accost women at parties at that time, in addition to saying he spiked women's drinks and saw him lined up outside rooms with other boys to gang rape girls. She also said he was "present" when she herself was gang raped.

Kavanaugh responded in a statement that the charge was "ridiculous and from The Twilight Zone."

Hirono, who has been one of the leading Democratic voices calling for Kavanaugh's nomination to be withdrawn, appeared on CNN Thursday and was pressed by Jake Tapper on whether she believed Swetnick's severe allegations.

"Do I believe her allegations?" Hirono repeated. "You know, what we need is—I keep coming back to it, because we need an FBI investigation, because you know why? I look at Dr. Ford's account, and I see the indicators of credibility. Meanwhile, all I get from Judge Kavanaugh is ‘I didn't do it.' He denies everything, or he doesn't remember. What is that? … This is a job interview for Judge Kavanaugh. There is no right to a Supreme Court seat, and so what we're left with is we need to really look at his credibility, his candor, his character. Those are all at issue, and the American people are watching."

Tapper pressed her again, however, saying the charges made by Swetnick were "so appalling and so shocking."

"The idea of gang rapes going on among the students of this school, Georgetown Prep, the idea that this was a common occurrence, and we are now just learning about it, and I'm wondering, do you find the allegations—I know you want an FBI investigation … but do you find Julie Swetnick's charges, which are now before you as a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, do you find them credible?" he asked.

Hirono again would not answer directly, saying Swetnick knew that lying to the FBI would be a crime.

"The fact that it is an affidavit, she's come forward to say that she is perfectly willing to talk with the FBI," Hirono said. "She knows very well with all the clearances that she has that lying to the FBI is a crime, so if all of this is going on, should we not be talking to other witnesses, especially Mark Judge, who is clearly a major witness in this instance and there is absolutely no intention of calling him or having the FBI talk to him. I find that really troubling and appalling."

Hirono said "people would remember such occurrences" going on and the FBI would need to investigate accordingly.

Hirono told Tapper on Sunday that she believed Christine Blasey Ford's accusation that Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her at a high school party in the early 1980s.

Swetnick made the charge in a sworn affidavit and is being represented by Michael Avenatti, a Democrat, outspoken opponent of the Trump administration, and also the lawyer for Stormy Daniels, the porn actress suing President Donald Trump.

She was the third woman to publicly accuse Kavanaugh of sexual misconduct this month, following Ford and Deborah Ramirez, a Yale classmate who said Kavanaugh exposed himself to her at a party.

He has denied all of the charges, and none of the allegations have any contemporaneous, corroborating evidence.