Senators spar over FBI report on Kavanaugh

Trump’s judge nominee Bett Kavanaugh

US senators are sparring over an FBI report into sexual misconduct claims against Brett Kavanaugh, President Donald Trump’s Supreme Court nominee.

One copy of the report exists for all 100 senators to read Democrats said it was incomplete and Republicans retorted it did not support the accusations.

Judge Kavanaugh has vehemently denied all allegations against him.

What’s in the report?
The report contains summaries of interviews that the FBI has conducted.

It is in paper format only and no copies will be made. It is being held in a secure room in the basement of the Capitol building, known as a Sensitive Compartmented Information Facility, or “Skif”.

Senators have been told not to reveal its contents, but some have already began to describe its findings.

Senator Bob Corker said the report is 46 pages long.

Democrats have raised concerns that the investigation has been too narrow in scope, with key witnesses not interviewed.

In a letter to FBI Director Christopher Wray on Thursday, the lawyers for the first woman accusing Mr Kavanaugh of sexual assault, Professor Christine Blasey Ford, criticised investigators for not speaking with more than a dozen alleged witnesses whose names she had provided.

A confirmation vote is expected on Saturday. His appointment would tilt the court in favour of conservatives.

The court’s nine justices are appointed for life and have the final say on some of the most contentious issues in US public life, from abortion to gun control and voting laws.

Republicans have a 51-49 majority in the Senate. Two Republican senators who have expressed reservations in the past and could have swayed the vote have now indicated they they found the report “thorough” and that it reached no new conclusions, without revealing on whether they plan to support Mr Kavanaugh’s candidature.

Republicans have accused Democrats of seeking to delay the confirmation of Mr Kavanaugh in the hope that they will make gains in the mid-term elections in November and stop his appointment altogether.