Grassley: No reason to delay Kavanaugh hearing

Republicans warned earlier Tuesday that they expected to move forward with the Monday hearing, and potentially a committee vote as soon as next week, even if Ford refused to publicly testify. 

In addition to a public hearing, Grassley says they also offered Ford the option to testify privately or with speak with committee staff. Republicans were also debating bringing in an outside lawyer to question Ford and Kavanaugh. 

Grassley’s staff said they also gave Ford the choice of multiple dates. 

Kavanaugh has repeatedly denied wrongdoing amid the sexual assault allegations that have threatened his chances of being confirmed to the Supreme Court. 

GOP leadership agreed to holding a public hearing amid intense pressure from members of their caucus, where several Republican senators said they wanted to hear from Ford before moving forward with the nomination. 

Those same Republicans warned on Tuesday that they were puzzled by Ford’s reluctance to testify publicly and urged her to take the opportunity to speak with senators. 

“Republicans extended a hand in good faith. If we don’t hear from both sides on Monday, let’s vote,” said GOP Sen. Bob Corker (Tenn.), who was one of the first Republicans to call for the Judiciary Committee to hit pause on Kavanaugh’s nomination on Sunday. 

. “I hope she does (appear). I think she needs to be heard.”