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It’s possible that it was a purely tactical decision. But now that I’ve read the letter Ford wrote to Feinstein about Kavanaugh, one line stuck out: “I have received medical treatment regarding the assault.” Reading that, I would naturally think that the writer saw some sort of medical doctor about the assault within some short time frame after the assault. If I were on Feinstein’s staff, I would have contacted her and asked if she could provide any reasonably contemporaneous medical records. The answer, “Well, I brought it up at a couples therapy session 30 years later, without mentioning Kavanaugh’s name, and I also mentioned it to a personal therapist the following year” isn’t what we normally mean by “receiving medical treatment” after an assault.

If the letter had been released, the first question from Republicans would have been about this “medical treatment.” Psychological counseling many years later, yes. Medical treatment, no. And Ford’s a psychology professor, so the difference shouldn’t be that obscure. Now, I’m not saying there aren’t plausible explanations for why she used the phrase “medical treatment” that would not undermine her credibility. But I am saying that if you allege sexual assault in the distant past against a Supreme Court nominee, and you claim in writing to have undergone medical treatment as a result of the assault, but you never saw a medical doctor, and didn’t even see a therapist for thirty-three years, a Senator might not want to stake her reputation on your claim.

THE HILL: Collins knocks Democrats over handling of Kavanaugh assault allegation. “Collins asked if Democrats believed Ford, ‘why didn’t they surface this information earlier,’ and if they didn’t believe Ford, ‘why did they decide at the 11th hour to release it?’”

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ADULT IN THE ROOM: Sen. John Kennedy ‘offended’ by Dianne Feinstein’s handling of Kavanaugh accusation.

ANITA HILL, REDUX: Kavanaugh Accuser Breaks Anonymity, Is Liberal Professor.

UPDATE: “Here’s what we know”: Judiciary Committee chair Chuck Grassley reacts to new Kavanaugh allegation report. (Bumped).

MORE: Sen. Jeff Flake wants to postpone vote on Brett Kavanaugh; Update: Statement from Sen. Collins.

Plus: Thread: “IF you wanted to detonate an 11th-hr, unfalsifiable smear & strategically leak it for max impact, this is how you’d do it.”


h/t DB & GR


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