Sen. Lindsey Graham promised Sunday he’ll “to get to the bottom of” the FBI investigation into the sexual assault allegations leveled against Judge Brett Kavanaugh and said that his own investigation into how the Democrats have handled the Supreme Court nominee’s confirmation hearings has only just begun.
“I’m going to get to the bottom of it,” Graham, R-S.C., told Maria Bartiromo on Fox News’ “Sunday Morning Futures.”
The longtime South Carolina senator said that, among other things, he wanted to find out how the letter from Kavanaugh accuser Christine Blasey Ford was leaked to the press, who recommended that she hire her lawyer and what role the Democrats played in bringing these allegations against the judge to light.
“This was about delaying the nomination” Graham added. “This can be played out over time and destroy the ability of good people to come forward.”
Graham’s appearance on “Sunday Morning Futures” comes just days after he let loose on his Democratic colleagues in the Senate Judiciary Committee during Kavanaugh’s testimony.
“This is the most unethical sham since I’ve been in politics,” a visibily angry Graham said on Thursday from the dais while pointing at Democratic senators. “And if you really wanted to know the truth, you sure as hell wouldn’t have done what you’ve done to this guy.”
Graham added: “Boy, y’all want power and I hope you don’t get it.”
The lawmaker, who says the FBI probe “should be done by Monday or Tuesday,” has been one of Kavanaugh’s staunchest defenders since President Trump nominated Kavanaugh back in June and, on Sunday, echoed the Supreme Court nominee’s words from the judge’s hearing last week that the allegations against him have indelibly altered his life.
“I’ve known Brett for 20 years,” Graham said. “They tried to ruin his life.”
While Graham has said that the investigation into the allegations will wrap up early in the week and that the full Senate will vote on his confirmation shortly after, the FBI has been granted a week to conduct all the interviews and background investigating the agency needs.
President Trump initially opposed such an investigation in the face of sexual misconduct claims against Kavanaugh, but the president and Senate Republican leaders agreed to an inquiry after GOP Sen. Jeff Flake of Arizona made clear he would not vote to confirm Kavanaugh without one.
Calls for an FBI investigation of Kavanaugh mounted after Ford alleged that Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her at a party when they were teenagers. Kavanaugh has denied being the perpetrator.
In dueling appearances last Thursday, Kavanaugh and Ford told their stories during sworn testimony before the Judiciary Committee. The panel voted Friday in favor of Kavanaugh, along party lines, and Flake then offered his proposal for the FBI investigation.
Trump then ordered the FBI to reopen Kavanaugh’s background investigation, which has delayed a final vote on Kavanaugh’s nomination. The Judiciary Committee has said the probe should be limited to “current credible allegations” against Kavanaugh and be finished by next Friday.
The FBI conducts background checks for federal nominees, but the agency does not make judgments on the credibility or significance of allegations. The investigators will compile information about Kavanaugh’s past and provide their findings to the White House and include the information in Kavanaugh’s background file, which is available to senators.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.