Feinstein Attacks Cotton’s ‘Ridiculous’ Claim She’ll Be Investigated

WASHINGTON, DC - SEPTEMBER 27: Senate Judiciary Committee Ranking Member Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) speaks to members of the press in the Senate Basement on September 27, 2018 in Washington, DC. On Thursday, Christine Blasey Ford, who has accused Kavanaugh of sexual assault, is testifying before the Senate Judiciary Committee.  (Photo by Zach Gibson/Getty Images)
Zach Gibson/Getty Images North America

Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) rolled her eyes at Sen. Tom Cotton’s (R-AR) “ridiculous” claim that she’ll be investigated on Monday, as many of Cotton’s GOP colleagues said they knew nothing about that claim.

Cotton, a close and fierce ally to President Trump, said on Sunday that Feinstein’s office will be investigated to find out how Dr. Christine Blasey Ford’s accusations against Judge Brett Kavanaugh became public. The Intercept, which broke the story of the allegations, has said they didn’t get it from her office. The allegations have potentially put Kavanaugh’s Supreme Court confirmation in jeopardy.

Feinstein, the Senate Judiciary Committee’s top Democrat, scoffed at the claim from Cotton.

“I think it’s pretty ridiculous, actually,” she told TPM as she exited the Senate Monday night.

And many of Cotton’s GOP allies said they didn’t know anything about any investigation — even as some of them questioned how the information had gotten out. Republicans have accused Democrats of leaking Ford’s accusations at the last minute for political gain and tried to paint them as having ruined Ford’s life, while refusing to accept Ford’s claims that Kavanaugh assaulted her.

Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) said a question about Cotton’s claim was the “first I’ve heard of it.”

“I haven’t talked to Tom about it,” Sen. Joni Ernst (R-IA) said.

Sen. Thom Tillis (R-NC), a Judiciary member, said he hadn’t “reviewed” the claim. Sen. David Perdue (R-GA), another close Trump ally, said he didn’t know anything about it and hadn’t talked to Cotton.

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX), also on Judicary, was the only Republican TPM spoke to who specifically threw his support behind an investigation into Feinstein’s office.

“Dr. Ford’s testimony raised serious questions about the conduct of Democratic members of Congress deliberately leaking Dr. Ford’s letter without her consent and against her wishes. That did serious damage to Dr. Ford and her family,” he said before speculating Ford’s accusation had been leaked either by Feinstein’s office or from Rep. Anna Eshoo’s (D-CA), the only other lawmaker who Ford contacted. “I think there should be an investigation into who leaked that letter and why.”

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), the Judiciary Committee’s staunchest Kavanaugh defender, has also called for an investigation — but didn’t claim that there’s already one pending.

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