Sen. Chris Coons, a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, said Tuesday he's already heard enough to vote against forwarding Brett Kavanaugh's nomination to the Supreme Court, even before hearing about the allegations of sexual abuse being made against him by California psychology professor Christine Blasey Ford.
"I take these allegations very seriously," the Delaware Democrat told MSNBC's "Morning Joe." "I'm glad we're going to give them an open hearing."
However, Coons said his reasons for voting against Kavanaugh are rooted more in his "grave concerns" about Kavanaugh's "extreme views on presidential power. He's also got ways in which he has spoken and written and decided on issues about individual liberty and our understanding of the Constitution in the modern era that I think are also outside the mainstream."
Coons said he does take Ford's claims that Kavanaugh assaulted her while they were in high school in the 1980s at face value, and he is encouraged to hear Republicans say she should be heard.
"This is about more than one nomination to the Supreme Court, more than one judicial nomination," said Coons. "This is about whether we as a country have gotten to the point where we listen to women who raise accusations of sexual assault."
He added he thinks President Donald Trump should be taken at his word, and ensure that both parties are heard, but that will require some FBI information so the matter isn't a "he said/she said" situation.
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