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tv   Andrea Mitchell Reports  MSNBC  September 27, 2018 9:00am-10:00am PDT

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saw brett in the manner described by dr. ford. and i can go on and on about that. but we've got to realize that what we have done, in this case, of all the time you go through a background investigation by the fbi then it comes to us. there's always some holes in it we have to follow up on. besides -- >> mr. chairman -- >> we're responding to dr. ford's request to tell her story. that's why we're here. >> mr. chairman. >> miss mitchell. >> mr. chairman, i want to point out that to support what senator whitehouse said in the anita hill case -- >> can we hear from dr. ford. >> george bush ordered that the investigation be opened again. >> miss mitchell, will you proceed for senator lee? >> thank you, mr. chairman. dr. ford, the "washington post" reported in their september 16th
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article that you did show them therapist notes. is that incorrect? >> i don't remember physically showing her a note. >> okay. >> perhaps my counsel did. i don't remember physically showing her my copy of the note. >> okay. >> but i just don't remember. i'm sorry. i have retrieved a physical copy of those medical records. >> okay. thank you. you also attended individual therapy. did you show any of those notes to the reporter from the "washington post"? >> again, i don't remember if i showed her, like, something that i summarized or if i just spoke about it. or if she saw it in my counsel's office. i can't -- i don't know for sure. i certainly spoke with her about the 2013 record with the individual therapist. >> and brett kavanaugh's name is
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not in those notes, correct? >> correct. >> okay. in reading the "washington post" article, it mentions that this incident that we're here about contributed to anxiety and ptsd problems with which you have struggled. the word "contributed" does that mean there are other things that have happened that have also contributed to anxiety and ptsd? >> i think that's a great question. i think that tit's multifactorial. so that was certainly a critical risk that we would call it a risk factor in science, so that would be a predictor of the symptoms that i now have. it doesn't mean that other things that have happened 234 my life would have -- would make it worse or better. there are other risk factors, as well. >> so have there been other things that contributed to the
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anxiety and ptsd that you suffered? >> well, i think there's a sort of biological predispositions that everyone has for particular disorders so i can't rule out i would have some biological predispositions to be anxious type person. >> what about environmental? >> environmentally, not that i can think of. >> okay. >> certainly nothing as striking as that event. >> okay. >> in your interview with the "washington post," you said that you told your husband early in your marriage that you had been a victim of, and i quote "physical abuse." in your statement you said before you were married you told him you were experienced, quote "sexual assault" do these two things refer to the same incident? >> yes. >> and at either point on these two times, did you use any names? >> no.
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>> okay. >> may i ask, dr. ford, how did you get to washington? >> in an airplane. >> okay. >> i ask that because it's been reported by the press that you would not submit to an interview with the committee because of your fear of flying. is that true? >> well, i was willing -- i was hoping they would come to me but then i realized that was an unrealistic request. >> it would have been a quicker trip for me. >> yes. >> so that was certainly what i was hoping was to avoid having to get on an airplane, but i eventually was able to get up the gumption with the help of some friends and get on the plane. >> when you were here in the mid atlantic area back in august, the end of july/august, how did you get here? >> also by airplane. i come here once a year during the summer to visit my family.
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>> okay. >> i'm sorry not here. go to delaware. >> okay. >> in fact, you fly fairly frequently for your hobbies and you've had to fly for your work, is that true? >> correct. unfortunately. >> you were consulting bias statistician in sydney, australia, right? >> i've never been to australia but the company i work for is based in australia. they have an office in san francisco, california. i don't think i'll make it to australia. >> it is long. i also saw on your cv that you list the following interests of surf travel and you put hawaii, coasta rica, south pacific islands, french polynesia. have you been to those places 1234. >> correct. >> by airplane? >> and your interests include oceanography hawaiian culture. did you travel by air as a part of those interests? correct. >> okay. thank you very much.
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>> easier for me to travel going the direction when it's a vacation. >> thank you, mr. chairman. thank you for being here, dr. ford. you know, in my old job as a prosecutor, we investigated reports like this. so it gave me a window on the types of cases that hurt women and hurt all of us. and i would always tell the women that came before us that they were going to have to tell their story before a jury box of strangers. you've had to tell your story before the entire nation. for so many years, people swept cases like yours under the rug. they'd say what happens inside a house didn't belong in the courthouse. well, the times have changed. so i just want to thank you for coming forward today and for sharing your report with us. now, i understand you've taken a polygraph test. dr. ford, that found you were
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being truthful when you described what happened to you. can you tell us why you decided to take that test? >> i was meeting with attorneys. i was interviewing various attorneys and the attorneys asked if i was willing to take it and i said "absolutely." that said, it was almost as anxiety-provoking as an airplane flight. >> okay. >> you've talked about your recollections and seeing mark judge at that safe away. if there had been an appropriate reopening of the background check and fbi interviews, would that help you find the time period if you knew when he worked at the safeaway. >> i feel i could be more helpful if i could be provided with the employment records. >> thank you. i would assume that's true. under federal law, dr. ford, i don't expect you to know this. statements made to medical professionals are considered to be more reliable.
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there's a federal rule of evidence about this. you told your counsellor about this back in 2012, is that right? >> my therapist? >> my individual therapist? >> correct. >> right. >> and i understand your husband was also present when you spoke about this incident in front of a counsellor and he recalls you using judge kavanaugh's name, is that right? >> yes, i just have to slow down a minute. i might have been confusing. there were two separate incidents where it's reflected in the medical records. i talked about it more than those two times. but therapists don't typically write down content as much as they write down process. they usually are tracking your symptoms and not your story and the facts. i just have it in my record twice. >> right. >> the first time is in 2012 with my husband in couples therapy with the quibbling over the remodel. then in 2013 with my individual
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therapist. >> so if someone had actually done the investigation, your husband would have been able to say you named his name at that time. >> correct. >> okay. and i know you've been concerned with your privacy throughout the process. you first requested your account be kept confidential. can you briefly tell us why? >> yes. as i stated before, once i was unsuccessful in getting my information to you, before the candidate was chosen, my original intent was to get the information when there was still a list of other candidates available. once that was not successful, and i saw that persons were very supportive of the nominee, i tracked it all summer and realized that when i was
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calculating that risk/benefit ratio that it looked like i was going to just, you know, suffer only for no reason. >> okay. >> you know from my experience, with memory, i remember distinctly things that happened to me in high school or happened to me in college. but i don't exactly remember the date. i don't exactly remember the time. i sometimes may not even remember the exact place where it occurred but i remember the interaction. and many people are focussed today on what you're not able to remember about that night. i actually think you remember a lot. i'm going to phrase it a little differently. can you tell us what you don't forget about that night? >> the stairwell, the living room, the bedroom, the bed on the right side of the room, as you walk into the room there was a bed to the right. the bathroom in close proximity,
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the laughter, the uproarous laughter, and the multiple attempts to escape and the final ability to do so. >> thank you very much, dr. ford. >> dr. ford, i want to correct the record but it's not something that i'm saying that you stated wrongly because you may not know the fact that when you said that you didn't think it was possible for us to go to california as a committee or investigators to go to california to talk to you, we did, in fact, offer that to you and we had the capability of doing it and we would have done it anywhere or any time. >> thank you. >> mr. chairman, could i put the polygraph results on the record, please. the polygraph results in the record >> is there any objection? >> the chart?
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>> the polygraph. you want to see it? can you hold a minute? >> i think you might have it. >> can we have the underlying charts? >> i have the polygraph results i would like to put in the record. i'll deal with the charts after that. could i put the polygraph test in the record? >> mr. chairman, we were -- we had proposed having the polygraph examer testify, you know. if that happened, the pan plea of materials he had supporting his examinations would have been provided. you rejected that request. so what we did provide was the polygraph report, which is what the members of the committee currently have. >> and on september 26th, mr. chairman, this was actually sent to your chief counsel. i want to share it with america so they have the report, as well. >> we'll accept, without objection, what you have asked to include. we're also requesting and expect
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the other materials i stated. >> mr. chairman, you wouldn't allow the underlying witness who performed the polygraph test to testify, nor would you allow mark judge to testify. so i would just like to point out, thank you for allowing the report in the record but that is the reason that we don't have the underlying information for you. >> you got what you wanted and i think you would be satisfied. >> i am satisfied. >> senator, go ahead. >> when was the polygraph administered? >> it was administered on august 7th, 2018. it was the date of the report is august 10th, 2018. >> what wasn't provided to the committee? >> let's just see if we can't do that in a more orderly way. >> he was asking and i have it here and you have it, as well. >> we've accepted. >> all right. >> miss mitchell for senator
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cruz. >> thank you. dr. ford, we've talked about the day and the night you've described in the summer of 1982, thank you for being willing to do that. i know it's difficult. i would like to shift gears and discuss the last several months. in your statement, you said that on july 6th, you had a, quote "sense of urgency to relay the information to the senate and the president." did you contact either the senate or the president on or before july 6th? >> no, i did not. i did not know how to do that. >> okay. >> prior to july 6th, had you spoken to any member of congress, when i say congress, i mean the senate or the house of representatives or any congressional staff members about your allegations?
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>> no. >> why did you contact the "washington post" on july 6th? >> so, i was panicking because i knew the timeline was short for the decision, and people were giving me advice on the beach -- people who don't know about the processes but they were giving me advice. many people told me you need to hire a lawyer. and i didn't do that. i didn't understand why i would need a lawyer. as somebody said, call the "new york times," call the "washington post," put in an enormous tip, go to your congressperson. when i weighed those options, i felt like the best option was to do the civic route, which is to go to my congressperson. so i called her office and i also put in the anonymous tip to
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the "washington post," and neither, unfortunately, neither got back to me before the selection of the nominee. >> you testified that congresswoman eshoo contacted you -- >> they contacted me on the date. >> had you talked to you about your allegations with anyone in her office before the date of july 9th? >> i told the receptionist on the phone. >> okay. >> on july 10th, you texted the "washington post," again, which was really the third time, is that right? second date, third time. >> let's see. one moment. correct. >> and you texted "been advised to contact senators or "new york times." haven't heard back from "washington post." who advised you to contact
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senators or the "new york times"? >> beach friends. coming up with ideas of how i could try to get some people because people weren't responding to me very quickly. so very quickly they responded to that text for what unknown reason once i sent that encrypted text, they responded very quickly. >> did you contact the "new york times"? >> no. >> why not? >> i wasn't interested in pursuing the media route, particularly. so i felt like one was enough. the "washington post" and i was nervous about doing that. my preference was to talk with my congressperson. >> okay. the "washington post" texted back that someone would get in touch -- get you in touch with a reporter. did you subsequently talk to a report we are the "washington post"? >> yes. under the encrypted app and off the record.
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>> okay. who was that reporter? >> emma brown. >> okay. the person who ultimately wrote the story on september 16th? >> correct. >> okay. did you talk to any member of congress, congress includes the senate or house of representatives or any congressional staff members about your allegations between july 10th and the july 30th, which was the date of your letter to senator feinstein? >> yes, i met with congresswoman eshoo's staff and i think that's july 18th. the wednesday and then on the friday i met with the congresswoman herself. >> okay. when you met with her, did you meet with her alone or did someone come with you? >> i was alone. she had a staff person. >> okay. >> what did you talk about with congresswoman eshoo and her staff on july 18th and the 20th?
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>> i described the night of the incident and we spent time speaking about that. i asked her how to -- what my options were in terms of going forward, and how to get that information relaid forward. also, talk talked to her about fears of whether this was confidential information and she discussed the constituent confidentiality principle. >> thank you. >> thank you, chairman grassley. i would like to ask the unanimous consent to submit five articles including one titled "why sexual assault memories stick" and "why didn't kavanaugh accuser come forward police often ignore sexual assault victims." >> i want to begin by thanking you for testifying in front of us today. you came forward with serious and relevant information about a nominee for a lifetime position
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on our supreme court. you didn't have to. i know you've done it at great personal cost. this is a public service. i want you to know that i'm grateful to have the opportunity to hear from you directly today. i would like to first follow up on that line of questioning miss mitchell was following. i think a lot of people don't realize that you chose to come forward with your concerns about judge kavanaugh before he was nominated to the supreme court. do i understand correctly when you first reached out to congresswoman eshoo and to the "washington post" tip line that was when he was on the short list but before he was nominated to the supreme court, is that correct? >> correct. >> and if i understand your testimony earlier, you were motivated bay sense of civic duty and, frankly, a hope that some other highly qualified nominee might be picked not out of a motivation at a late stage to have an impact on the final decision? >> correct. i felt it was important to get the information to you but i
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didn't know how to do it while there was still a short list of candidates. >> thank you, doctor. according to justice department data, about two-thirds of sexual assault survivors don't report their assaults. based in your experience, i would be interested in hearing from you about this. because you bore this alone. you bore this alone for a very long time. and it would be helpful for us to better understand the ways it's impacted your whole life >>well, it's impacted me at different stages of the development of my life. so the immediate impact was probably the worst. so the first four years i think i described earlier a fairly disastrous first two years of undergraduate studies at university of north carolina. where i was finally able to pull myself together and then once
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coping with the immediate impacts of short term impacts, i experienced, like, longer term impacts of anxiety and relationship challenges. >> thank you for sharing that. and yet you went on to get a ph.d. from usc, correct? >> correct. >> as you predicted, there was a wide range of responses to your coming forward. some thousands of survivors have been motivated and inspired. others have been critical. as i review the wide range of reactions, i've been troubled by the excuse offered by too many. that this was a high school incident and boys will be boys. to me, that's just far too low a standard for the conduct of boys and men in our country. if you would, i would appreciate your reaction to the excuse that boys will be boys. >> i can only speak for how it has impacted me greatly for the last 36 years. even though i was 15 years old
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at the time. i think, you know, the younger you are when these things happen, it can possibly have worse impacts than when you're a full -- when your brain is fully developed and you have better coping skills that you developed. >> you know experts have written about how it's common for sexual assault survivors to remember some facts a about the experience very sharply and very clearly but not others. and that has to do with the survival mode that we go into in experiencing trauma. is that your experience, is that something you can help a layperson understand? >> yes, i was definitely experiencing the fight or flight mode, is that what you're referring to? >> yes. >> i was definitely experiencing the surge of adrenaline and cortisol and credit that a little bit for my ability to get out of the situation. but also some other lucky events that occurred.
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that allowed me to get out of the event. >> dr. ford, we're grateful that you came through and that you shared your account with us and the american people. i think you provided important information. i would like to thank you for meeting your civic duty. i wish we could have provided for you a more thorough hearing today. i think asking for the fbi to investigate this matter thoroughly was not asking too much. i think asking to have the other individual involved in your assault, mark judge, appear before us today was not asking too much. i'm grateful that you came forward. i'm thankful for your courage, which set an important example. thank you, dr. ford. >> miss mitchell for senator sasse. >> dr. ford, we were talking about you meeting in july with congresswoman eshoo. did you talk about your allegations with any republican member of congress or congressional staff? >> i did not. where i live, the congressman is a democrat.
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>> okay. >> was it communicated to you by your counsel or someone else that the committee had asked to interview you and that they offered to come out to california to do so? >> we're going to object, mr. chairman, to any call for privileged conversations between counsel and dr. ford. >> could you validate the fact the offer was made without her saying a word? >> is that possible for that to be answered without violating any consult relationships. >> do you mind if i say something to you directly. >> yeah. >> i just appreciate that you did offer that. i wasn't clear on what the offer was, if you were going to come out to see me. i would have happily hosted you and happy to speak with you. i just didn't -- it wasn't clear
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to me that was the case. >> okay. does that take care of your question? >> yes, thank you, mr. chairman. >> proceed then. >> okay. before july 30th, the date on your letter to senator feinstein, had you retained counsel with regard to these allegations? >> no. i didn't think -- i didn't understand why i would need lawyers, actually. >> a lot of people have that feeling. let's talk about the letter that you wrote on july 30th. you asked senator feinstein to confidentiality quote -- >> i'm trying to look for it. >> so stop the clock, will you. >> i found it. sorry. >> okay. you asked senator feinstein to
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maintain confidentiality until we have had further opportunity to speak. then said you were available to speak further vacationing in the mid atlantic until august 7th. is that correct? >> the last line? is that what you're -- i'm now just catching up with you. i'm a little slower. my mind is getting a little tired. i'm available to speak further, should you wish to discuss. i was in delaware until august 7th. >> okay. >> and after that i went to new hampshire and then back to california. >> did you talk with anybody about this letter before you sent it? >> i talked with anna eshoo's office. >> okay. and why did you talk to congresswoman eshoo's office about that letter? >> they were willing to hand deliver it to senator feinstein. >> okay. did anyone help you write the letter? >> no.
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>> okay. after you sent your letter, did you or anyone on your behalf speak to senator feinstein personally or with any senate staffer? >> yes. >> okay. i had a phone call with senator feinstein. >> okay. and when was that? >> that was while i was still in delaware. so before august 7th. >> okay. and how many times did you speak with senator feinstein? >> once. >> okay. what did you talk about? >> she asked me some questions about the incident. >> okay. >> and i answered those questions. >> okay. >> was that the extent -- the gist of the conversation? >> yeah. it was a fairly brief phone call. >> okay. did you ever give senator feinstein or anyone else the permission to release that letter? >> not that i know of. >> okay. >> between the letter date july
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30th and august 7th, did you speak with any other person about your allegations? >> could you say the dates again? >> between the date of july 30th and august 7th, so while you were still in delaware. did you speak with any other person about your allegations? >> i'm just trying to remember what dates -- >> you're asking her any lawyers may have spoken with, correct? >> correct. >> oh. correct. i think correct then. i was interviewing lawyers. >> okay. >> but not speaking personally about it. >> aside from lawyers that you were seeking to possibly hire to represent you, did you speak to anybody else about it during that period of time? >> no. >> i was staying with my parents
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at the time. >> did you talk to them about it? >> definitely not. >> okay. so would it be fair to say you retained counsel during that time period of july 30th to august 7th? >> i can't remember the exact date but it was -- i was interviewing lawyers during that period of time sitting in the car in the driveway and in the walgreens parking lot in delaware. and trying to figure out how the whole system works of interviewing lawyers and how to pick one, et. cetera. >> you testified earlier that you had -- you didn't see the need for lawyers. now you're trying to hire them. what made you change your mind? >> it seemed like most of the individuals that i had told, which didn't -- the total number or the total was not very high, but those persons advised me to, at this point, get a lawyer for advice about whether to push forward or to stay back. >> did that include
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congresswoman eshoo and senator feinstein? >> no. >> okay. >> i want to thank you dr. ford for what you said about acknowledging that we had said we would come to california. senator blumenthal. >> thank you, mr. chairman. i want to join in thanking you for being here today and just tell you i have found your testimony powerful and credible and i believe you. you're a teacher, correct? >> correct. >> you have given america an amazing teaching moment and you may have other moments in the classroom, but you have inspired and you have enlightened america. you have inspired and given courage to women.
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you have inspired and enlightened men in america to listen respectfully to women survivors and men who have survived sexual attack, than is a profound public service regardless of what happens with this nomination. so the teachers of america, people of america, should be proud of what you have done. let me tell you why i believe you, not only because of the prior consistent statements and the polygraph tests and your request for an fbi investigation and your urging that this committee hear from other witnesses who could corroborate or dispute your story, but,
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also, you have been very honest about what you cannot remember. and someone composing a story can make it all come together in a seamless way, but someone who is honest, i speak from my experience as a prosecutor, as well, is also candid about what she or he cannot remember. the senators on the other side of the aisle have been silent. this procedure is unprecedented in a confirmation hearing, but i want to quote one of my colleagues, senator lindsey graham, in the book that he wrote in 2015 when he was
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describing his own service, and very distinguished naval service. i'm not under oath. [ laughter ] he said, quote, "of his prosecutions of rape cases, i learned how much unexpected courage from a deep and hidden place it takes for a rape victim or sexually abused child to testify against their assailant. i learned how much courage from a deep and hidden place it takes for a rape victim or sexually abused child to testify against their assailant." if we agree on nothing else today, i hope on a bipartisan basis we can agree on how much courage it has taken for you to
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come forward. i think you have earned america's gratitude. now, there's been some talk about your requesting an fbi investigation. you mentioned a point just a few minutes ago that you could better estimate the time that you ran into mark judge, if you knew the time that he was working at that supermarket. that's a fact that could be uncovered by an fbi investigation. that would help further your account. would you like mark judge to be interviewed in connection with the background investigation and the serious credible allegations that you've made?
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>> that would be my preference. i'm not sure it's up to me. but i certainly would feel like i could be more helpful to everyone if i knew the date that he worked at the safeaway so i could give a more specific date of the assault >>well, it's not up to you. it's up to the president of the united states and his failure to ask for an fbi investigation, in my view, is tantamount to a cover up. thank you, mr. chairman. >> miss mitchell for senator flake. >> thank you. we've heard this morning several times you did take a polygraph and that was on august 7th, is that right? >> i believe so is the day. i was flying from bwi to manchester, new hampshire. >> okay. >> why did you decide to take a polygraph? >> i didn't see any reason not to do it.
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>> were you advised to do that? >> again, you're seeming to call for communications between counsel and client. i don't think you mean to do that. if you do, she shouldn't have to answer that. >> would the counsel, could you let her answer the extent to which it doesn't violate the relationship between you and dr. ford? >> based on the advice of the counsel, i was happy to undergo the polygraph test. all though i found it extremely stressful. much longer than i anticipated. i told my whole life story, i
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felt like. i endured it and it was fine. >> and i understand they can be that way. have you ever taken any other polygraphs in your life? >> never. >> okay. you went to see a gentleman by the name of jeremiah hanifin. did anyone advise you on that choice? >> yes, i believe his name was jerry. >> jerry hanifin? >> yeah. >> did anyone advice you on that choice? >> i don't understand -- >> yeah, i didn't choose him myself. he was the person that came to do the polygraph test. >> okay. he actually conducted the polygraph not in his office in virginia but actually at the hotel next to baltimore, washington airport, is that right? >> correct. >> why was that location chosen
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for the polygraph? >> i had left my grandmother's funeral in fort lincoln cemetery that day and was on tight schedule to get a plane to manchester, new hampshire. so he was willing to come to me, which was appreciated. >> so he administered a polygraph on the day you attended your grandmother's funeral? >> correct. >> or it might have been the next day. i spent the night in the hotel. i don't remember the exact day. >> have you ever had discussions with anyone besides your attorneys on how to take a polygraph? >> never. >> and i don't just mean counter measures but i mean just any sort of tips or anything like that? >> no. i was scared of the test itself but was comfortable that i could
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tell the information and the test would reveal whatever it was going to reveal. i didn't expect it to be as long as it was going to be so it was a little bit stressful. >> have you ever given tips or advice to somebody who is looking to take a polygraph test? >> never. >> okay. >> did you pay for the polygraph yourself? >> i don't think so. >> okay. >> do you know who did pay for the polygraph? >> not yet. no. >> okay. you have the handwritten statement that you wrote out. did anyone assist you in writing that statement? >> no, but you can tell how anxious i was by the terrible handwriting. >> did you we touched on it
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earlier, did you know the committee has requested not only the charts from the polygraph test but also any audio or video recordings of the polygraph test? >> no. >> were you audio and video recorded when you were taking that test? >> okay, so i remember being hooked up to a machine being placed on to my body and being asked a lot of questions and crying a lot. that's my primary memory of that test. i don't know. i know he took laborious detail explaining what he was going to be doing, but i was just focussed on kind of what i was going to say and my fear about that. i wasn't listening to every detail about whether it was audio or video reported >>well, you were in a hotel room, right? >> correct. >> regular hotel room with the bed and bathroom? >> no. it was a conference room. i was sitting at a chair and he
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was behind me. >> did you note any cameras in the room? >> well, he had a computer set up so i guess i assumed he was somehow taping and recording me. >> okay. so you assumed you were being video and audio recorded. >> correct. >> but you don't know for sure? >> i don't know for sure. >> we're going to recess now for a half hour for lunch. thank you, dr. ford. >> we're going to keep going -- >> yeah. >> ten minutes after lunch. >> seems to be some confusion. let's hope a happy surprise for dr. ford as this hearing continues. we've been joined here in our new york studios by andrea mitchell. she joins amy and joyce vance,
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two former feds who are here with us today bearing witness to this hearing. joyce, i thought i would begin with you. talk about what you've witnessed so far today. >> dr. ford was an incredibly credible witness. she had a very honest presentation. one of the issues that people look for when a witness testifies is do they come across as believable? whether it's because of the words they use or the body language. everything here indicates trust worthiness and i suspect the women all across the country feel as though this could be their best friend testifying about something that happened to her. nothing here looked forced. nothing looked made up. every indication was that this was trust worthy testimony. >> amy was saying she might be the most unpackaged witness in the history of televised hearings. >> yes, if you remember back to when we were watching brett
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kavanaugh testify. he seemed credible answering republicans questions and when he was questioned by, senator harris, he fell apart as a witness. and that contrast between how someone is when they're able to prepare versus how when they're being asked cross examination type questions, which is what miss mitchell is trying to do here, is very telling as joyce said about someone's credibility. i think here what we're noticing is that dr. ford is remarkably consistent in her demeanor and way she's able to answer both on either side of the aisle and also with her prepared statements. so it just really, again, as i said earlier, i defy anyone, republican or democrat who is watching this to have one good reason why she should not be believed. >> andrea mitchell, people are watching on planes. they're watching in stores. they're watching on their phones. they're watching at home. anywhere they can get a television signal.
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this is a moment we're in the middle of. >> on air force one? >> yeah. >> look, this is a moment that is going to gavel nice the nation. 27 years ago when it already did parallel hearing, this is in the age of social media where people can catch what it going on here. with my colleagues here, i have to say there were these moments that were so logical and credible, a 15-year-old girl going into a safeway wanting to go in the other door because she's a teen she doesn't want to go in with her mom. these parenthetical moments where she says things that resonate to all of us, at some point, a 15-year-old girl or boy, or have children or, you know, others who have these experiences. so that is credible. now for the job for the republicans is to try to find breaks in that narrative. so far the only things i saw
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that were telling and they seemed to be minor points. did you hear them talking as you were coming down the stairs in a moment of shock. how traumatized how you of flying when you fly for vacations. when did you first try to approach the committee with your concerns? it was actually very, i think, supportive to her narrative that she tried to approach -- who knows how to approach a senator or congressman or the "washington post" or anyone else if you're a private citizens? so her beach friends were telling her you have to say something. he's on the list. he could be nominated. and she, you know, sending a messa message the "washington post" and they don't pick up and tries to reach a congressperson and they don't answer right away. it was not consistently a late hit. i mean, it's a very, very consistent narrative. we know from our white house correspondents kristin welker
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and others that they want him to be more aggressive, as clarence thomas was in coming out so strongly and turning the narrative around in terms of public opinion that key weekend. it's difficult for him to do that because of the overall context and the record here. and there's a lot of record that he drank excessively. if he had not said definitively in his previous testimony i don't remember this. it didn't happen. >> daniel goldman joins us in a studio in new york. daniel, i'm going to read you something from steve schmidt. every gop campaign strategies and hill staffer wishes they had the button to open the trap door under rachel mitchell's chair.
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what a total and complete political disaster for republicans. your reaction? >> i think that's right. and i think one thing to also consider that isn't being discussed that much today is we're not just talking about a supreme court nomination. brett kavanaugh currently sits on the d.c. circuit court of appeals. there are issues as to whether he may continue to sit there, if he ultimately testifies today and perjuries himself. my ten years of prosecuting, brian, i never ever had a witness this credible. but she's not only credible in her recall of the details, she's explaining to these senators, to the american public why scientifically she actually does remember these things. and the effect of the trauma is
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something that people who have sat with witnesses that have gone through trauma resonates with us. because those are the specifics that she remembers. and it's just something that for someone like brett kavanaugh, particularly, if he was intoxicated, without that trauma, there's no way for him to remember and dispute these details. so when we return back from lunch and he begins his testimony, he has got to be very, very careful because there's very little wiggle room for him to maneuver here. >> amy you and joyce were nodding. as we said earlier, her ordinariness is obvious and exceptional. and her exceptional ism when she falls back on her life's training and, by the way, i have a ph.d. in a related field. >> i think all of us, i mean, lay people and especially prosecutors who had trials where we have victims and then we put on experts after to explain the victim's testimony and their gaps in memory, she is
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everything bottled up in one. she's really good at both of them. that's because, honestly, it's so clear that she's just telling the truth as best she can. discu does she remember every detail speaking, they weren't speaking, no, but does she remember the face of the man who attacked her, does she remember being pushed in that room, does she remember that moment, joyce and i were talking about this, where she remembered locking eye s with mark judge and thinking "he might come to my rescue." mark judge, i believe that's why he doesn't want to testify. think he might have a moment of conscience where he needs to tell the truth. it goes back to her credibility that when the whole thing started, who did she put in the room, mark judge, a friend of kavanaugh. you weren't do that if you were making this up. one other small point of how we got here to this moment no so disastrous for kavanaugh and the republicans, here you have dr. ford saying that safeway,
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mark judge worked at a safeway. if someone could just get me the employment records and tell me the year, i could pinpoint this. she's begging for investigation on something so simple. i bet right now someone at safeway could pull out those records. it's just pathetic that they didn't do that. >> in fact, in mark judge's book, he referred to fact he worked at safeway in his book "wasted." he himself recalls working in the safeway. it's just a matter of getting the date. the question here is why judge has not been subpoenaed. i can't understand, frankly, why there isn't an fbi background check. it's something that george bush 41 asked for for the committee last time around. almost the same point, post-hearing, reopening it. but why the committee has not subpoenaed mark judge, even if he's going to appear in private? but under sworn testimony? >> maybe they're fraafraid of w he's going to say.
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>> i think that is the answer. the people watching this are the american people and their political response is going to be dispositive because this is not a trial situation, you know, it replicates it but it is really a matter of public opinion. that will influence those republicans who may still have an open mind and they're not just two women. they're a larger number. there's a third woman i'm looking to who is shelley moore cap c capito. she went to hotten arms. from my reporting, the holten arms community has surrounded this witness with an embrace in such a big way, of all generations. i know someone who are older, some who are younger than this witness. they're obviously not the same generation. but senator capito has been silent on this. she's the daughter of a former governor. she went to that school. she wallaces a boarder at that
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school. curious how she comes down. because there's going to be a lot of peer group pressure from her alma mater for her to take a stand at some point. >> joyce vance, somewhere in a room brett kavanaugh is watching one presumes with his attorney. beth wilkinson, first rate washington lawyer, how on earth do you tell your client to get the tone right for when it's his turn after this extraordinary morning? >> so presumably judge kavanaugh, he spent at least the last week closeted at the white house, hasn't just rehearsed his story, he's been videotaped, he's been coached, on how to present it in tone. that's just the reality of how this preparation is done these days. he has a very narrow path here. i'm not sure there's any successful way to move forward. steve schmidt said yesterday that anyone who votes in favor of kavanaugh will have to explain why they don't believe the women.
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and after watching dr. ford, i'm not certain what the credible explanation for why you don't believe her is. but that's his job. he'll have to give anyone who wants to vote for him reason to answer that question and say that she's not believable. >> and when daniel goldman raises the possibility that he won't be able to return to the d.c. circuit, that gets your attention. >> well, that's an interesting possibility. it would require some form of action, whether it's a judicial inquiry commission that leads to impeachment or some other mechanism is unclear. this tarnishes his reputation in the day of "me too" when federal judges have to rule on cases that involve women. i think it's fair to question we're maybe getting a little bit ahead of the horse to talk about what happened in terms of the judgeship he currently possesses. a problem that underlies this, you know, we have the allegations of sexual assault, but then we have someone who, if you believe everything that we've been told and all of the report, not only ran with this
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group in high school but joined clubs in college that were misogynistic, clerked for a federal judge who himself was removed from the bench for sexual harassment. i think there will be something around that appropriate mind-ette is amind-set and worl view for a judge to have. >> today the white house has been in transit between new york and washington. what are you hearing from the west wing? >> a couple of things. i'm just off the phone with a source who tells me the plan for today is we talk about judge kavanaugh who will be coming forward now momentarily after dr. ford wraps up. the plan for him is to be watching all of this from vice president mike pence's ceremonial office here on capitol hill. we know that brett kavanaugh has left his home and has arrived heard. presumably, he will have an opportunity to watch the rest of this. we know the president is also watching. we know that because his press
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secretary said so. we know that because the president has said his focus will be on this. the president has canceled his meeting that was planned today with rosz enstein. so the president can specifically not take any attention away, not detract from this hearing. earlier this week, we talked about the split screen moment, with the president potentially talking with rosenstein who oversees the special counsel investigation, maybe going to fire him or accept his resignation. that's now been back burnered at least for adays, several days. talking with allies in the white house, there is a sense of -- i might characterize it as a grimness, that this process is not benefiting the republicans the way that rachel mitchell is being held to these five-minute time limits, the questioning, the tone of the questioning, et cetera. we're getting a little bit of on the record reaction from the president's son donald trump jr.
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who just in the last little bit here has tweeted about this. trueing attention to that line of questioning related to dr. ford's fear of flying. she doesn't like to fly. she does for vacations. that's more pleasurable for her than coming out east to face questioning in this manner, if you will. so i think some folks in the president's orbit are still reserving judgment until after they hear from kavanaugh but the pressure is on him in an intense way. >> hallie jackson on the hill. indeed, this is the tweet from donald trump jr. i'm no psychology professor but it does seem weird to me that someone could have a selective fear of flying. can't do it to testify but for vacation, well, it's not a problem at all. just one of the many people we've heard from today. mimi rocca, during the break, you and i were saying that there's such a dichotomy between the grassleys of the world.
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forgive me, but kind of high-bound and unable to see the forest for the senate hearing procedural trees. we have this one very human drama unfolding with her testimony, her demeanor, her bearing, and then it gets to chairman grassley, who's all about stopping and starting the clock and wanting credit for the fact that they offered to go to california and gather her testimony there. >> it's just unbelievable. and the more he speaks, i mean, the contrast just make, as you say, her seem more human, more credible, more believable. and i will say, if this is what they are going to pick her apart about, that she is somehow inconsistent in her fear of flying, which, by the way, it's completely believable. motivation can go a long way to get you over fear. and i would not want to fly anywhere in the world to do what she's doing but she did it. but if that is what they're going to come at her for, i mean, that is just, it's pathetic and, you know, we have
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to remember, we have to step back and remember what this is about. this is not about dr. ford, although frankly i think we all almost are -- enjoying is the wrong word, but willing to talk about it because she's such a good witness. as senator feinstein said at the beginning, she said this is about brett kavanaugh's credibility. it's so easy to foreget that. why is dr. ford there? because he has said this did not happen. as andrea has said, he has painted himself as this choir boy who did nothing wrong. he could have admitted some mistakes and maybe gotten through this but that is not the tact they took. and now everybody coming forward and saying no, this is a person who drank to excess, who probably, you know, in all likelihood could not possibly remember everything he did wrong while he was drunk, those people, now, are proving him a liar. she is proving him a liar. and it is his credibility here at issue. >> just a little footnote, along the corridors, our colleagues
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did track down the senator and he her reactions, it is compelling and emotional, obviously anyone watching has to feel the same way. so we know these things can change dramatically. we know the wrap-up of her questioning and subsequently the drama of his appearance, but up until now, the credibility of her testimony is just unparalleled. >> 1:00 p.m. hour has just rooived. we're in the middle of the break in the senate judiciary committee hearing of dr. christine blasey ford. if you've been watching, then you know it is a very choppy proceeding. they are -- they are staying within their custom and tradition, going from democrat to republican, back again. the republican senators have