Senate Republicans on the Judiciary Committee, eager to avoid the optics of “old, white men” questioning Dr. Christine Blasey Ford, hired veteran sex crimes prosecutor Rachel Mitchell to question Ford for them on Thursday about her claim against Brett Kavanaugh.
Mitchell has now written a 5-page memo explaining why she does not think a “reasonable prosecutor” would bring this case. These words just about echoed those fired FBI Director’s James Comey‘s uttered when he said “no reasonable prosecutor” would bring a case against Hillary Clinton.
Rachel Mitchell, prosecutor hired by Judiciary Committee Republicans writes 5-page memo sent to all GOP senators on Ford testimony tonight. “I do not think that a reasonable prosecutor would bring this case based on the evidence before the Committee.” pic.twitter.com/h9eCcWPRwH
— Phil Mattingly (@Phil_Mattingly) October 1, 2018
“A ‘he said, she said’ case is incredibly difficult to prove. But this case is even weaker than that. Dr. Ford identified other witnesses to the event, and those witnesses either refuted her allegations or failed to corroborate them,” she concluded. “For the reasons discussed below, I do not think that a reasonable prosecutor would bring this case based on the evidence before the Committee. Nor do I believe that the evidence is sufficient to satisfy the proponderance-of-evidence standard.”
Mitchell went on to say that Ford’s testimony was not consistent, that she has “struggled to identify” Kavanaugh by name, that she has “no memory of key details” from the night the alleged assault occurred and that she has not corroborated her claim.
Mitchell, a registered Republican, was criticized on Twitter for making a “political” statement on behalf of Senate Republicans. Mitchell was called anything from a “partisan hired gun” to a “defense attorney for Brett Kavanaugh.”
1/ This is a political statement by a lawyer representing Senate Republicans, not a prosecutorial statement.
Last week’s hearing was structured in a manner to make it difficult to arrive at the truth. Only two witnesses were called, each questioner was given five minutes, etc. https://t.co/AO8fLXw1Ti
— Renato Mariotti (@renato_mariotti) October 1, 2018
Hey, Rachel Mitchell, here's what a reasonable prosecutor would do after hearing Dr. Blasey's account of attempted rape: Make damned sure there's a thorough, legitimate investigation of the assault. But here's what no reasonable prosecutor ever do: Work as a partisan hired gun. https://t.co/1b0dkZIkCG
— Elizabeth de la Vega (@Delavegalaw) October 1, 2018
Rachel Mitchell Is Not Very Good at Propagandahttps://t.co/z8Lt7IiyaD
— emptywheel (@emptywheel) October 1, 2018
Another said that Mitchell is “not very good at propaganda,” pointing out that there was a key moment during the hearing where Mitchell did not ask Kavanaugh about a July 1, 1982 party he seems to have attended. Names of two men (Mark Judge and PJ Smyth) Ford named as present when the alleged attack against her occurred were on the calendar Kavanaugh kept, but he was not asked about that.
(1/2) This document is even worse than Mitchell allowing herself to be used as political cover for questioning of Ford, made crystal clear by the on-the-spot firing when she got too close to the facts in questioning BK. Two examples: https://t.co/suEaD8UKCA
— Mimi Rocah (@Mimirocah1) October 1, 2018
If Rachel Mitchell’s memo to Senate Republicans is reflective of how they handle sex crimes investigations in Maricopa County it deserves to be a major issue in the next DA race.
— Matthew Yglesias (@mattyglesias) October 1, 2018
If anything, Rachel Mitchell is a defense attorney for Brett Kavanaugh…for his…job interview. https://t.co/29j55t3XVC
— Adam Parkhomenko (@AdamParkhomenko) October 1, 2018
[Image via Michael Reynolds-Pool/Getty Images]