WASHINGTON — President Trump’s counselor said that she had spoken with Mr. Trump and members of the Senate Judiciary Committee and that the woman who accused Supreme Court nominee Brett M. Kavanaugh of sexual assault “will be heard.”
“So, let me make very clear,” Kellyanne Conway, the counselor, said Monday on Fox & Friends. “I have spoken with the president. I have spoken with Senator Graham and others. This woman will be heard.” Ms. Conway referred to Senator Lindsey Graham, a member of the Judiciary committee, which is considering Judge Kavanaugh’s confirmation this week.
Judge Kavanaugh has been accused by Christine Blasey Ford of sexually assaulting her at a party in the 1980s when they were both teenagers in high school. Judge Kavanaugh has denied the allegations.
The Senate Judiciary Committee is scheduled to vote on Judge Kavanaugh’s nomination on Thursday. Democrats say the vote should be delayed so that the committee can hear Ms. Ford — a move Republicans have said is a stalling tactic. Judge Kavanaugh’s confirmation hearings have drawn raucous protests and partisan fights, even before Ms. Ford’s allegations became public.
Ms. Ford’s attorney, Debra Katz, told morning news shows on Monday that her client was willing to testify before Congress.
There was no indication, on Monday morning, that the Senate Judiciary Committee planned to postpone the vote. A key Republican on the committee, however, Senator Jeff Flake of Arizona, told Politico that he was “not comfortable voting yes” on Judge Kavanaugh’s nomination until he learned more about Ms. Ford’s account. Mr. Flake’s objection could force a delay for the committee, which has 11 Republicans and 10 Democrats. Republicans have hoped to confirm Judge Kavanaugh before the midterm elections in November, when their control of the Senate could slip away.
Ms. Ford, a research psychologist at Palo Alto University in Northern California, told the The Washington Post that a drunken, teenage Mr. Kavanaugh pinned her on a bed, groped her and covered her mouth to keep her from screaming.
“I thought he might inadvertently kill me,” the newspaper quoted her as saying. “He was trying to attack me and remove my clothing.”
Ms. Ford came forward publicly over the weekend, putting her name behind accusations that had been shared with the top Democrat on the Senate Judiciary Committee on the condition that she remain anonymous.
The Democratic senator, Dianne Feinstein of California, received Ms. Ford’s letter in July, after Ms. Ford shared it with her local congresswoman, Representative Anna Eshoo, a Democrat of California.
The letter and its contents were shared only with a small group of Capitol Hill aides. The issue was not raised during Judge Kavanaugh’s days of testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee, even though by that point the letter was an open secret on Capitol Hill.
On Monday, a White House spokeswoman reiterated Judge Kavanaugh’s denial of the incident.
“On Friday, Judge Kavanaugh ‘categorically and unequivocally’ denied this allegation,” the spokeswoman, Kerri Kupec, said in a statement. “This has not changed. Judge Kavanaugh and the White House both stand by that statement.”
Advisers to the president have privately urged Mr. Trump, who has been accused of sexual harassment by more than a dozen women, not to address the allegations on Twitter, his favorite public platform. Early on Monday morning, Mr. Trump was busy retweeting updates about the storm, Florence, that hit the Carolinas over the weekend.