01:08 - Source: CNN
Senator to men: Shut up and step up
Washington CNN —  

Hawaii Democratic Sen. Mazie Hirono said Wednesday that there should be some attempt to corroborate an allegation of sexual assault against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh before the Senate Judiciary Committee hears from the woman who is accusing him.

On Tuesday, Christine Blasey Ford’s attorneys argued in a letter to the committee that the FBI should investigate the alleged incident, which Ford says occurred while she and Kavanaugh were in high school, before senators hold a hearing on the allegation.

Kavanaugh has said he “categorically and unequivocally” denies the allegation, which he has called “completely false.”

Hirono told CNN “New Day” host Alisyn Camerota the committee is setting up a situation “where there is not even a modicum of fairness extended” to Ford without a proper FBI investigation into the incident.

“I think we should all be focused on why the heck does she not want to come. She doesn’t want to be a part of a railroad job,” Hirono, one of four women sitting on the Judiciary Committee.

Hirono added that if she chooses to question Kavanaugh at a hearing next Monday without Ford’s testimony, “it will be because by not going, this is going to disadvantage and victimize Dr. Ford even more.”

She added that there “are already some Republican members, leaders who are saying if she’s not coming forward, why even have this?”

Ford alleges that while at a party when they were in high school, Kavanaugh pushed her into a bedroom along with his former classmate Mark Judge, and that Kavanaugh attempted to remove her clothes. She also alleges that Kavanaugh put his hand over her mouth when she attempted to scream. Judge has also denied the incident occurred.

The Hawaii senator called for Judge, who has refused to speak publicly to the committee, to be subpoenaed by the panel.

“I would like for that to happen and, in fact, some of us had already sent a letter to [Judiciary Committee] Chairman [Chuck] Grassley [to say] that if we are going to have this hearing, there should be at a minimum three witnesses: Judge Kavanaugh, Dr. Ford, and Mark Judge,” Hirono said.

CNN’s Sophie Tatum contributed to this report.