An explosive New Yorker report published Sunday night says that a second woman has come forward to accuse Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh of sexual misconduct.
And about 15 minutes before the New Yorker report was published, lawyer Michael Avenatti — who also represents adult film star Stormy Daniels — tweeted that he is representing a third woman who has “credible information” about Kavanaugh and his high school friend Mark Judge.
The new allegations added to the accusations from Christine Blasey Ford that have roiled the nomination hearings of President Trump’s Supreme Court pick.
Here’s what we know so far:
• Deborah Ramirez, 53, says the incident took place during the 1983-84 school year at Yale University, when Kavanaugh was a freshman.
• Ramirez said Kavanaugh “had exposed himself at a drunken dormitory party, thrust his penis in her face, and caused her to touch it without her consent as she pushed him away,” according to the New Yorker.
• Ramirez initially was hesitant to speak out about the incident because she had been drinking and had gaps in her memory, the New Yorker reported, but ultimately decided to come forward after spending six days assessing her memory and consulting a lawyer.
• Ramirez also said she wanted the incident to be looked into, telling the New Yorker, “I would think an FBI investigation would be warranted.”
• At least two Senate Democrats are investigating the new allegation, according to the report. The offices of several US senators, including Republicans who “expressed concern about its potential impact on Kavanaugh’s nomination,” received the information, the New Yorker said.
• Senator Dianne Feinstein of California, the ranking Democrat on the Judiciary Committee, called Sunday night for the ‘‘immediate postponement’’ of any further action on Kavanaugh’s nomination. She also asked the committee’s chairman, GOP Senator Chuck Grassley of Iowa, to have the FBI investigate the allegations of both Ford and Ramirez.
• Republicans on the Senate Judiciary Committee said they would investigate Ramirez’s accusation. Taylor Foy, a Judiciary spokesman, complained that Democrats ‘‘actively withheld information’’ from the Republicans. He said they appear ‘‘more interested in a political takedown’’ than a bipartisan process.
• Kavanaugh quickly denied the allegation, calling it “a smear, plain and simple,” according to a statement sent by the White House.
• A Trump spokeswoman called the claim “uncorroborated” and said the White House “stands firmly behind Judge Kavanaugh,” saying that the allegation is the “latest in a coordinated smear campaign by the Democrats designed to tear down a good man.”
• The New Yorker report was co-written by Ronan Farrow, who won a Pulitzer Prize after penning stories that helped spark the #MeToo movement.
• In a tweet sent shortly before the New Yorker article was publish, Avenatti said a woman he represented had information about Kavanaugh and Judge. Avenatti didn’t name his client in the tweet or specify her allegations against Kavanaugh.
I represent a woman with credible information regarding Judge Kavanaugh and Mark Judge. We will be demanding the opportunity to present testimony to the committee and will likewise be demanding that Judge and others be subpoenaed to testify. The nomination must be withdrawn.— Michael Avenatti (@MichaelAvenatti) September 23, 2018
• Once the New Yorker story was published, Avenatti followed up with a second tweet, noting that his client was “not Deborah Ramirez.”
My client is not Deborah Ramirez.— Michael Avenatti (@MichaelAvenatti) September 23, 2018
• Avenatti then uploaded a screenshot of an e-mail chain with Mike Davis, chief counsel for nominations for the US Senate judiciary panel, in which Avenatti provided a list of several questions he wanted Senate investigators to ask of Kavanaugh.
My e-mail of moments ago with Mike Davis, Chief Counsel for Nominations for U.S. Senate Committee on the Judiciary. We demand that this process be thorough, open and fair, which is what the American public deserves. It must not be rushed and evidence/witnesses must not be hidden. pic.twitter.com/11XLZJBTtY— Michael Avenatti (@MichaelAvenatti) September 24, 2018
• A White House official not authorized to speak publicly questioned the accusations coming from Avenatti’s client, saying that the presence of the high-profile attorney — who has publicly taken on Trump and is weighing a 2020 Democratic presidential bid — makes the proceedings a ‘‘circus.’’
• Kellyanne Conway told CBS on Monday that the accusations against Kavanaugh sound like ‘‘a vast left-wing conspiracy,’’ using rhetoric that echoed Hillary Clinton’s 1998 description of allegations that her husband, President Bill Clinton, had had affairs.
• Also on Monday, Trump — at the United Nations for his second General Assembly meeting — called the allegations unfair and unsubstantiated, made by accusers who come ‘‘out of the woodwork.’’ He also questioned the political motivations of the attorneys representing the women, saying, ‘‘you should look into the lawyers doing the representation.’’ On Kavanaugh, Trump stressed: ‘‘I am with him all the way.’’
• On Monday afternoon, Kavanaugh doubled down on his denial as he sent a letter to Grassley and Feinstein in which he said he “will not be intimidated into withdrawing from this process.”
Here’s what we know about Ford’s accusations:
• In a Washington Post report published in mid-September, Ford said that during a house party in suburban Washington, D.C., a drunken 17-year-old Kavanaugh got on top of her, tried to remove her clothes, and covered her mouth to keep her from screaming before she escaped. Ford was 15 at the time.
• ‘‘I thought he might inadvertently kill me,’’ Ford told the Post. ‘‘He was trying to attack me and remove my clothing.’’
• Mark Judge, who was Kavanaugh’s friend and classmate at Georgetown Preparatory School, watched the incident, Ford said.
• She said she escaped Kavanaugh’s grip when Judge “jumped on top of them, sending all three tumbling.” Both Kavanaugh and Judge were “stumbling drunk,” Ford alleged.
• Judge, who is now a conservative author, wrote a 1997 book about binge-drinking during his teenage years and a private school culture filled with debauchery. In the book, Judge changed the name of the school to Loyola Prep, and mentioned a girl asking about a “Bart O’Kavanaugh” during a party.
• Kavanaugh has become embroiled in controversy during his Supreme Court hearings as a result of Ford’s allegations. Both Kavanaugh and Ford are poised to testify Thursday in front of the Senate Judiciary Committee. (Trump nominated Kavanaugh for a seat on the nation’s highest court in July after Justice Anthony Kennedy announced in late June that he would retire.)
Material from the Associated Press was used in this report.