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FEATURING MARJORIE COHN – The nation remains riveted this week as the White House ordered an FBI probe of Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh. The move came after Republican Senator Jeff Flake last Friday announced that he would vote to advance Kavanaugh from the Senate Judiciary Committee on the condition that the FBI investigate the claims of sexual assault against him.

There are contradicting reports about the scope of the FBI probe. After President Trump told reporters on Saturday that the FBI would have “free rein” to interview whomever they want, new reports cited officials saying the inquiry would be very limited and is being directed by White House Counsel Don McGahan and Senate Republicans. But on Monday morning the New York Times reported anonymous sources that said backlash against the limits of the probe has resulted in a new White House directive that the FBI can interview anyone it wants to, provided the investigation is complete by the end of the week.

In the wake of Kavanaugh’s testimony on Thursday several of his inconsistencies and falsehoods have been reported in the news. Among them are the definitions of slang words written in his 1982 calendar, his assertions of the legal drinking age in Maryland and his connections to Yale University. Given that he made many easily provable false assertions under oath, it is not yet clear if Republicans will give up on his nomination to the Supreme Court despite apparent multiple perjuries. Nor is it clear if the FBI will focus on them.

Read Marjorie Cohn’s “Aggressive Kavanaugh Portrays Himself as Victim” for Truthout, HERE.

Marjorie Cohn, professor emerita at the Thomas Jefferson School of Law. She recently wrote the piece “Aggressive Kavanaugh Portrays Himself as Victim” for Truthout.

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