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NYS Bar Association and ABA call for FBI investigation into Kavanaugh

September 28, 2018 By Rob Abruzzese, Legal Editor Brooklyn Daily Eagle
Nominee for the U.S. Supreme Court Brett Kavanaugh has come under scrutiny because of claims of sexual assault coming from three different women. AP Photo

Yale Law School thinks FBI investigation is necessary

During his testimony on Thursday, U.S. Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh cited his “well-qualified” endorsement from the American Bar Association (ABA). However, just a few hours after the first day of hearings wrapped up, the ABA issued a call for the FBI to investigate allegations of sexual assault by the nominee.

On Friday, the New York State Bar Association joined in that call.

In a letter signed by ABA President Robert M. Carlson, the association called for a background check as necessary.

“We make this request because of the ABA’s respect for the rule of law and due process under law,” the statement read. “The basic principles that underscore the Senate’s constitutional duty of advice and consent on federal judicial nominees require nothing less than a careful examination of the accusations and facts by the FBI.

“Each appointment to our nation’s Highest Court (as with all others) is simply too important to rush to a vote. Deciding to proceed without conducting additional investigation would not only have a lasting impact on the Senate’s reputation, but it will also negatively affect the great trust necessary for the American people to have in the Supreme Court. It must remain an institution that will reliably follow the law and not politics.”

The ABA has not changed its rating of Judge Kavanaugh. Instead, it simply wants the vote to be delayed until an FBI investigation is complete.

The NYS Bar Association said that it “joins the ABA’s call.”

“We believe that it is essential to the rule of law in our nation and to the reputation of the Supreme Court that all Americans have confidence that candidates for the court are reviewed fairly and thoroughly, and that only an FBI investigation will give them that confidence,” said NYSBA President Michael Miller.

When the Brooklyn Eagle reached out to the Brooklyn Bar Association for comment, it declined to take a side in the matter. Its president pointed out that it regularly only gets involved with local judicial, attorney and court matters, and that it would be out of character for it to take a side in a federal debate.

Those two bar associations are hardly the only ones to call for the FBI to investigate. The dean of Yale Law School, where Kavanaugh attended, and who has been complimentary in the past of the nominee, also said an FBI investigation is prudent.

“I join the American Bar Association in calling for an additional investigation into allegations made against Judge Kavanaugh,” said Yale Law School Dean Heather Gerken. “Proceeding with the confirmation process without further investigation is not in the best interest of the Court or our profession.”

The decision for these groups to call for an FBI investigation followed accusations of sexual assault by Kavanaugh by Dr. Christine Blasey Ford, who knew him in high school, and two other women.

 

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