President Trump briefly singled out U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein during his West Virginia rally Saturday evening, insinuating that the top Democrat on the Senate Judiciary Committee leaked a letter from a woman accusing Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh of sexually assaulting her decades earlier.
“When you look at releases and leaks and they say, ‘No, I didn’t do it.’ Dianne Feinstein, did you leak?,” Trump said to a chorus of boos from the crowd. “Remember her answer? Uh uh, uh, what? No, no, I didn’t leak. Maybe she didn’t, but that was the worst body language I’ve ever seen.”
“Remember her answer? ‘Uh uh, uh, what? No, no, I didn’t leak.’ Maybe she didn’t, but that was the worst body language I’ve ever seen.”
Trump, who was in the state stumping for GOP candidates ahead of the midterm elections, was referring to the letter that Feinstein, of California, received from Kavanaugh accuser Christine Blasey Ford in July. Feinstein maintains she never came forward with Ford’s claim because Ford had requested confidentiality.
“I don’t believe my staff would leak it,” Feinstein said in response to a question Thursday from Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn, R-Texas. “I have not asked that question directly.”
Feinstein posted a Twitter message Saturday evening, denying that her office leaked the letter.
“From the moment I received Dr. Ford’s letter my actions have been consistent with her wishes,” feinstein wrote. “We kept her letter confidential and did not leak the contents or its existence to anyone. Survivors have a right to decide how their stories are made public.”
But one way or another, news of the letter was eventually leaked, sparking a divisive nationwide debate over Kavanaugh’s nomination to the highest court and Democrats calling for an FBI investigation into the allegations.
Ford’s letter alleging Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her was first reported Sept. 12 by the website the Intercept.
The Intercept reporter who broke the story tweeted: “Feinstein’s staff did not leak the letter to The Intercept.”
Ford claims Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her during a party in 1982 when they were high school students.
More women have since come forward to accuse Kavanaugh of sexual misconduct.
On Thursday, Ford and Kavanaugh testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee about the allegations.
“Brett’s assault on me drastically altered my life,” Ford told the committee.
At the hearing, Kavanaugh maintained his innocence and sparred with Democratic senators.
“This confirmation process has become a national disgrace,” Kavanaugh told the committee.
Trump on Friday ordered the FBI to conduct a limited “supplemental background” investigation into the matter.
Maryland lawmakers have also called on authorities to investigate Ford’s claims — and the authorities said they would do so, provided that an accuser files a formal complaint.