5 big questions about the Kavanaugh hearing

In six days, the political world -- and the broader world -- will turn to the Senate Judiciary Committee, wh...

Posted: Sep 19, 2018 9:30 AM
Updated: Sep 19, 2018 9:30 AM

In six days, the political world -- and the broader world -- will turn to the Senate Judiciary Committee, where Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh and Christine Blasey Ford, the woman accusing him of sexual assault, will testify before the assembled senators.

We think.

Brett Kavanaugh

Christine Blasey Ford

Donald Trump

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In response to the request from Senate Judiciary Committee chair Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, to appear next Monday to tell the story of her alleged sexual assault, Ford's attorneys said in a letter that the FBI should investigate the incident before senators hold a hearing.

Ford's attorney Lisa Banks threw more cold water on the idea of a Monday hearing. "She will talk with the committee," Banks told CNN's Anderson Cooper. "She is not prepared to talk with them at a hearing on Monday. This just came out 48 hours ago."

Whether or not Ford will actually attend the hearing -- which Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell insisted would go forward on Monday -- is the biggest unanswered question heading into next week's hearing, but it's far from the only one. Here are four more.

2. Will Grassley add any more witnesses? There's talk that Mark Judge, Kavanaugh's friend and someone who Ford alleges was in the room when the assault happened, might be called to testify. A lawyer for Judge told CNN on Tuesday that he wasn't speaking publicly to anyone, but Sen. Doug Jones told CNN Tuesday that he thinks Judge should be subpoenaed to testify. Then there is the question of whether the therapist Ford and her husband saw in 2012 might be called. Partial notes from the therapist reviewed by The Washington Post confirmed that Ford talked about the incident, although there was a discrepancy between how many people she now says were in the room and how many the therapist recorded her saying.

3. Will this be a public or a private hearing? On Tuesday, McConnell offered Ford the option of testifying in public or private. Ford's lawyer on Monday said that she was open to a public hearing, but it's not clear whether that may have changed.

4. Will President Donald Trump stay measured? The President has been remarkably measured -- by his own admittedly low standards -- when it comes to the allegations from Ford. "We should go through a process," Trump said Tuesday. "There shouldn't even be a little doubt." But there's a lot of time between now and next Monday. And Trump's Twitter fingers might get itchy.

5. Will Republicans stay unified? At the moment, Senate Republicans and the White House are singing from the same songbook: Bring Ford in, let her tell her story, ask questions and then see what happens from there. Can the GOP keep up that unified front -- with the 2018 election now seven weeks away and concerns about how the Kavanaugh story impacts the party's election prospects growing by the day?

The Point: The hearing is only six days away, supposedly. And the stakes, not just for Kavanaugh and Ford personally but for Trump and both parties, are stupendously large. And yet, uncertainty reigns. This has the makings of high-wire act with no net for everyone involved.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 308737

Reported Deaths: 7139
CountyCasesDeaths
DeSoto20931250
Hinds19961410
Harrison17562303
Rankin13369277
Jackson13156243
Madison9950212
Lee9890170
Jones8310161
Forrest7542148
Lauderdale7221237
Lowndes6289144
Lamar613384
Lafayette6072117
Washington5291133
Bolivar4776129
Oktibbeha457197
Panola4458103
Pearl River4437141
Warren4299119
Marshall4286102
Pontotoc417572
Monroe4062132
Union404675
Neshoba4005176
Lincoln3886109
Hancock373385
Leflore3471124
Sunflower331589
Tate325384
Pike3215105
Scott311472
Yazoo305069
Alcorn299465
Itawamba297877
Copiah293965
Coahoma290479
Simpson289586
Tippah285168
Prentiss276659
Marion266279
Leake261773
Wayne261541
Grenada256484
Covington255280
Adams246982
Newton245761
George238547
Winston226081
Tishomingo222567
Jasper220048
Attala213673
Chickasaw205457
Holmes187172
Clay183254
Stone179733
Clarke177776
Tallahatchie176140
Calhoun165431
Yalobusha160136
Smith159334
Walthall131043
Greene129633
Lawrence126623
Noxubee126534
Montgomery125742
Perry125238
Carroll120926
Amite120741
Webster113832
Jefferson Davis105532
Tunica103225
Claiborne101330
Benton97525
Kemper95628
Humphreys94632
Franklin82923
Quitman78916
Choctaw73917
Wilkinson65128
Jefferson64828
Sharkey49817
Issaquena1686
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 521623

Reported Deaths: 10739
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson754061493
Mobile39067799
Madison34040496
Tuscaloosa25367444
Montgomery24019567
Shelby23186239
Baldwin20701302
Lee15589165
Calhoun14342311
Morgan14158271
Etowah13685346
Marshall11995220
Houston10404278
Elmore10011200
Limestone9852147
Cullman9503189
St. Clair9463234
Lauderdale9265228
DeKalb8757181
Talladega8115171
Walker7139275
Jackson6756110
Autauga6750103
Blount6519134
Colbert6229130
Coffee5424113
Dale4772111
Russell430038
Franklin420782
Chilton4101109
Covington4061114
Tallapoosa3907146
Escambia390174
Dallas3525149
Chambers3514122
Clarke347060
Marion3072100
Pike306176
Lawrence295995
Winston273172
Bibb256059
Marengo248361
Geneva246075
Pickens233259
Barbour226455
Hale218575
Butler212967
Fayette209460
Henry188044
Cherokee182644
Randolph177241
Monroe172540
Washington165238
Macon155648
Clay150155
Crenshaw149457
Cleburne146741
Lamar139734
Lowndes136553
Wilcox124427
Bullock121640
Conecuh109428
Perry107626
Sumter103232
Coosa99428
Greene91434
Choctaw58824
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