California Gov. Jerry Brown suggested Friday that Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh’s defense of his drinking habits raised doubts about his entire denial of a sexual assault allegation.
“Whatever else he was saying, there’s no doubt that he was a heavy drinker and he told the exact opposite statement,” Brown said. “So his lies, I think, are relatively well-proved and I hope the FBI can figure that out.”
Speaking briefly to reporters after an event for Native Americans at the Capitol in Sacramento, Brown called Thursday’s hearing before the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee a “step toward an increasingly polarized America.”
Christine Blasey Ford, a university professor from Palo Alto, testified to the committee that Kavanaugh and a friend, drunk at a house party in high school, had held her down on a bed, attempted to remove her clothes and covered her mouth as she tried to scream. Kavanaugh forcefully denied the incident ever happened.
Kavanaugh also downplayed his underage drinking and told the committee he had never consumed so much alcohol that he blacked out or woke up unable to recall what he’d done the night before.
“My friends and I sometimes got together and had parties on weekends,” he said in his opening statement. “I drank beer with my friends. Almost everyone did. Sometimes I had too many beers. Sometimes others did. I liked beer. I still like beer. But I did not drink beer to the point of blacking out, and I never sexually assaulted anyone.”
Classmates from college have strongly disputed that characterization, with one saying he was “frequently unusually drunk” and “belligerent and mean.”
Senators on Friday advanced Kavanaugh’s nomination to a floor vote, but agreed to a delay of no more than one week so the FBI can further investigate Ford’s allegation.