Christine Blasey Ford's lawyer has informed the Senate Judiciary Committee that her client is prepared to testify next week about her claim of being sexually assaulted by Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, but said that doing so on Monday is "not possible."
Ford has accused Kavanaugh of drunkenly pinning her to a bed, groping her, and trying to stifle her screams at a high school party in the early 1980s. Kavanaugh has denied the allegation. The Senate Judiciary Committee scheduled a hearing on Monday for both of them to testify, with chairman Chuck Grassley (R., Iowa) also giving Ford the option of being interviewed privately.
Ford's attorney, Debra Katz, wrote in an email to top Republican and Democratic aides on the committee that it is Ford's "strong preference" that an FBI investigation be conducted before she testifies, the New York Times reported Thursday.
Katz said Ford "would be prepared to testify next week" if lawmakers offer "terms that are fair and which ensure her safety." Regarding the Monday deadline to testify, Katz said Ford testifying that day "is not possible and the Committee's insistence that it occur then is arbitrary in any event."
Senate Democrats are also calling for an FBI investigation into Ford's charge, while the White House has indicated it will not ask the FBI to look into the matter.
Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D., N.Y.) said Wednesday that Ford should not participate in the "sham hearing."