The Justice Department says the sexual assault allegation against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh “does not involve any potential federal crime” for the FBI to investigate.
The department said in a statement Monday night that the FBI’s role during background investigations is to evaluate whether the nominee could pose a national security risk and then provide that information “for the use of the decision makers.”
The department says it’s not the job of the FBI to judge the significance or the credibility of an accusation.
In the case of Kavanaugh, the FBI received a letter Sept. 12 with allegations of misconduct in the 1980s, when both Kavanaugh and his accuser were teenagers.
The Justice Department says the FBI forwarded the letter to the White House counsel’s office.
The Senate Judiciary Committee will hold a public hearing next Monday with Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh and the woman accusing him of sexual assault when they were teens.
That’s according to the GOP chairman, Chuck Grassley of Iowa, who announced the hearing Monday “to give these recent allegations a full airing.”
Grassley had tried to have the panel’s staff conduct phone interviews with both Kavanaugh and his accuser, Christine Blasey Ford. But Democrats rejected the private interviews and want the FBI to investigate the allegations as part of the nominee’s background investigation.