Grassley dishes on Kavanaugh hearings during brief Grundy County stop

U.S. Senator Chuck Grassley (left) and his grandson Pat (right), a state representative in the Iowa House, at the PT Grillers Event Center. As the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, the elder Grassley has presided over one of the most controversial Supreme Court nomination processes in American history amidst sexual assault allegations against Brett Kavanaugh. (Robert Maharry/The Grundy Register photo) 

Other than Judge Brett Kavanaugh himself and the woman who has accused the Supreme Court nominee of an attempted sexual assault in the early 1980s, no one has been more involved in the confirmation process than New Hartford farmer, seven-term U.S. Senator and Judiciary Committee Chairman Charles Grassley (R-Iowa).


With a few minutes to spare after a fundraising luncheon at the PT Grillers Event Center between Reinbeck and Dike on Friday, Grassley spoke to The Grundy Register about what to expect in the next few weeks, how the current ordeal compares to another famous hearing 27 years ago and why he believes Dr. Christine Blasey Ford deserves to be heard.


“I don’t seek national attention. It just kind of happens,” he said. “You’re in a position of leadership as chairman of the committee. You’ve got to do your job, and I guess I see it as just doing my job.”


Members of the judiciary committee and the lawyers for Dr. Ford, a professor at Stanford University and Palo Alto University who grew up in the same suburban area of Maryland as Judge Kavanaugh, are still hammering out the details on a hearing that would allow her to speak publicly on the allegations before a Senate vote, and Grassley expected it to be finalized by 5:30 p.m. on Friday.


The Senator went on to note that Kavanaugh, his wife and Dr. Ford have all received death threats in light of a Washington Post story that publicly identified the accuser and detailed her account of events. Ford claims that the nominee, when he was 17 and she was 15, drunkenly pinned her to a bed and groped her while attempting to cover her mouth and remove her clothing and that Mark Judge, a conservative writer and classmate of Kavanaugh’s at Georgetown Preparatory School in North Bethesda, witnessed the incident. The judge has categorically denied any wrongdoing. 


Near the end of the interview, he criticized the Democrats for a judicial philosophy he called “legislating from the bench” and surmised that Kavanaugh would bring “more balance” to the court than it’s had in quite some time.


“They want a super legislator because (with) their policies that they want changed, it’s difficult to get them from the elected representatives of the people,” Grassley said. “So they get court cases that can carry out their goals.” 


For the full story, be sure to pick up a copy of next week's Grundy Register. Subscribe by calling (319) 824-6958 or clicking here.