Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-IA) on Saturday announced that his committee investigation into allegations of sexual assault made against then-Supreme Court nominee and current Justice Brett Kavanaugh had produced no evidence to support those allegations.
On Friday, a woman named Judy Munro-Leighton admitted writing an anonymous letter with allegations against the conservative jurist.
The 414-page report (pdf) on November 3 summarizes the investigative findings based on interviews with 45 people and a review of 25 written statements. Grassley of Iowa said his committee had investigated the allegations made by Judy Munro-Leighton, a woman who claimed she was the author of an anonymous handwritten letter that detailed the graphic sexual assault allegations. Grassley claimed that Munro-Leighton confessed to committee investigators that she had never met Kavanaugh and admitted her allegation was a "ploy" and "tactic" because she opposed the judge's nomination.
Kavanaugh has denied all the allegations.
Claims of sexual misconduct threatened to derail Kavanaugh's confirmation in September, though he was ultimately confirmed in the Senate 50-48 after a contentious series of hearings that included testimony from accuser Dr. Christine Blasey Ford.
The report lifts the lid on the scale of the investigative effort that was triggered by 11th-hour accusations against Kavanaugh.
It's unclear who wrote the first Jane Doe letter. Grassley said Committee investigators attempted to reach Munro-Leighton by phone on October 3, but were unsuccessful.
Justice Brett Kavanaugh admitted that she conjured up the sexual assault charges she presented to congressional investigators during the confirmation hearings to "get attention". I am not Jane Doe. but I did read Jane Doe's letter. She later changed her story to say she saw Justice Kavanaugh and his friend near a punch bowl, and could not identify them as having actually been part of any rape.
The report added: "Indeed, the evidence appears to support the position that Julie Swetnick and [her attorney Michael] Avenatti criminally conspired to make materially false statements to the Committee and obstruct the Committee's investigation".
The Committee is grateful to citizens who come forward with relevant information in good faith, even if they are not one hundred percent sure about what they know. "But when individuals intentionally mislead the Committee, they divert Committee resources during time-sensitive investigations and materially impede our work".
Grassley asked for federal authorities to investigate her on allegations of making false statements and obstruction.
"Such acts are not only unfair; they are potentially illegal", Grassley stressed.