In a post this morning on Twitter, Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) revealed a letter that he sent to Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA) demanding that the scope of the FBI supplementary background investigation—finally agreed to after this week’s explosive testimony by one of Brett Kavanaugh’s multiple sexual assault accusers—be expanded to include a probe of whether the Supreme Court nominee committed perjury in some of his other statements during his confirmation hearings.
Pointing out that giving false statements to Congress violates federal criminal statutes, Senator Sanders pointed out five different times that Kavanaugh said something that he wants the FBI to determine the veracity of.
The first statement that the Senator wants to see probed is the claim that Kavanaugh knew nothing about the files stolen from Democratic Judiciary Committee members by Republican staffers during the Bush administration. Emails from the time show that the documents, one of which contained the subject line “spying,” were shared with the nominee at the time when he was a White House lawyer, begging the credibility of his denials that he knew that the documents were purloined.
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The second instance was from a statement that Kavanaugh made to Congress in 2006 when he said that did not know anything about the Bush administration’s warrantless wiretapping program until after accounts appeared in the press. Senator Sanders points to a recently unveiled email that indicates he may have been involved in conversations about the program prior to its disclosure in the media.
The third potentially false assertion during congressional testimony by Kavanaugh took place in 2004 when he said that William Pryor’s nomination to the 11th Circuit Court “was not one that I worked on personally,” another statement that has been refuted by subsequently released documents.
Again in 2006, Kavanaugh testified that “I was not involved and am not involved in the questions about the rules governing detention of combatants,” a statement that is also contradicted by new evidence, making it the fourth potential instance of perjury that Sanders wants to be investigated.
The fifth question that the Vermont senator wants the FBI to ask Kavanaugh about is the incongruity between his testimony before the Judiciary Committee that he does not believe that polygraph tests are reliable and his opinion in his judicial ruling in Sack vs U.S. Department of Defense where he wrote:
“As the Government notes, law enforcement agencies use polygraphs to test the credibility of witnesses and criminal defendants. Those agencies also use polygraphs to ‘screen applicants for security clearances so that they may be deemed suitable for work in critical law enforcement, defense, and intelligence collection roles.’ … The Government has satisfactorily explained how polygraph examinations serve law enforcement purposes.”
In his letter to Senator Grassley, Senator Sanders also cites four additional statements that Kavanaugh made in response to the sexual assault allegations made against him as necessary to be investigated before any confirmation vote is taken up on the Senate floor.
You can read the entirety of Senator Bernie Sanders letter to Judiciary Committee Chairman Grassley in the tweet below.
Lying to Congress is a federal crime.
The FBI must examine the veracity of Kavanaugh’s statements under oath in addition to the sexual assault allegations against him. Kavanaugh's truthfulness with the Senate goes to the very heart of whether he should be confirmed to the court. pic.twitter.com/TsNOTm4fxK
— Bernie Sanders (@SenSanders) September 29, 2018
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