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"It kind of raises the question, do they want to come to the public hearing or not?" The paper said the 2013 notes showed that Ford described a "rape attempt" in her late teens. Asked if that included sworn testimony at a public hearing before senators, Katz told CBS' "This Morning" program: "She's willing to do what she needs to do".

Trump earlier on Tuesday stepped up his defence of Kavanaugh and expressed sympathy towards his nominee, who met with officials at the White House for a second straight day, although not with the president.

The letter on Tuesday said that Ford "wants to cooperate with the Committee and with law enforcement".

A source close to Trump, who spoke on condition of anonymity, predicted trouble ahead should the Kavanaugh issue not be resolved soon, adding that "with seven weeks to go until an election, this is not the discussion that the Republicans want to be having in the era of the "me too" movement".

The allegation has shaken up the battle over Kavanaugh's confirmation, and Republicans are calling for a public hearing with both accuser and accused testifying.

"There is a law enacted almost 150 years ago that says that the Supreme Court shall consist of nine justices, which also presumes that when a vacancy occurs, the President will nominate a replacement and the Senate will provide advice and consent".

But the senator said Tuesday that he has been unable to get in contact with Ford and that she has yet to agree to testify before the committee.

President Trump says Brett Kavanaugh has an "unblemished" record, but says he wants to hear from Kavanaugh's accuser, Christine Blasey Ford, who says Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her.

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"There must be an agreement on witnesses, and the FBI should be given time to reopen its background check investigation into Judge Kavanaugh", Schumer said.

"She is very friendly, outgoing and brilliant, and she is a great mother", said clinical psychologist Erin Heinemeyer, a mentee of Ford's who is also a friend.

On the one hand, the steely Republican leader is determined to act as quickly to confirm Kavanaugh as he was to delay and destroy Garland's nomination. And since the hearing was scheduled, Republicans and Trump have increasingly rallied around Kavanaugh, insisting they will move forward with the confirmation process next week despite calls to delay the hearing.

Mark Judge, another friend and classmate of Kavanaugh's, has been named as the other person who was in the room when the alleged incident took place.

De Leon said the whistleblower bill didn't explicitly reference sexual harassment victims until this year, when it passed the Senate, though Melendez said it was always the intent to protect employees who report harassment.

Ford detailed her allegation in a letter sent in July to Senator Dianne Feinstein, the committee's top Democrat. The answer is obvious: yes, particularly if what that man did is a serious crime and he has never owned up to it nor sought to make amends. "The FBI's role in such matters is to provide information for the use of the decision makers".

"You imagine you're getting a new colleague, and it's been a pretty hard-fought, hard process, that they might see some of these cases - even if there's a circuit split and even if it's a really interesting issue - and just think, we can wait", Saharsky said. As you say, this is not really their thing. Given the politics, given energized women voters, given the new climate about sexual harassment, "it's very important that they give due respect to Dr. Ford". However, the Department of Justice has said in regard to this topic that "the Federal Bureau of Investigation does not make any judgment about the credibility or significance of any allegation", so it is not clear that the Federal Bureau of Investigation would have the jurisdiction to get involved.

Republicans are suggesting that Ford will have one chance to testify, and one chance only.