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Trump reaffirms support for embattled Supreme Court nominee


AFP Washington
President Donald Trump reaffirmed support for his Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh after the judge gave hours of testimony denying having sexually assaulted several women in his youth.
"Judge Kavanaugh showed America exactly why I nominated him. His testimony was powerful, honest, and riveting," Trump tweeted Thursday.
Trump called the Democratic opposition to his candidate and a slew of sexual assault allegations over the last week "a total sham and effort to delay, obstruct, and resist. The Senate must vote!" Trump's re-endorsement of Kavanaugh came seconds after the end of the day-long hearing in the Senate Judiciary Committee. Senators heard gripping and painful testimony from one of the accusers, Christine Blasey Ford, and then from Kavanaugh himself.
Kavanaugh, a conservative-leaning judge whose entry into the lifetime appointment would help shift the Supreme Court to the right for years to come, came out fighting.
Angrily denying the accusations against him, he ended his testimony by swearing to God that he had never attacked women, as alleged, during his school and university days.
Like many Americans, Trump spent much of the day watching the live broadcast of the hearing. The White House said he even watched a feed on Air Force One as he flew back from New York at the start of the Senate action.
Trump had angered many women's rights activists this week by seeming to suggest that the accusers must be making up their stories, because the alleged events dated to decades ago. Experts say that women often keep assault stories secret for long periods out of shame or fear.
However Trump softened his position on Wednesday, telling journalists that he was ready to change his mind, depending on the testimony.
"I can always be convinced," he said. "It's possible I'll hear that, and I'll say, 'Hey, I'm changing my mind.

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First Published: Sep 28 2018 | 5:45 AM IST

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