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Franklin Graham on Judge Kavanaugh Accusation: 'Not Relevant'

09-18-2018
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Evangelist and humanitarian Franklin Graham says the sexual assault allegation against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh is irrelevant.

He told CBN News Tuesday, "it's just a shame that a person like Judge Kavanaugh who has a stellar record--that somebody can bring something up that he did as a teenager close to 40 years ago. That's not relevant."

He added, "We've got to look at a person's life and what they've done as an adult and are they qualified for this position so this is just an attempt to smear him."

Graham said, "I hope the Senate is smarter than this and they're not going to let this stop the process from moving forward and confirming this man."

When questioned about the message that such a view sends to sexual abuse victims Graham said, "Well, there wasn't a crime committed. These are two teenagers and it's obvious that she said no and he respected it and walked away."  

READ: Supreme Showdown: Dems Tell American Men 'Just Shut Up', Threaten to Impeach Kavanaugh

Graham then noted that Kavanaugh has denied the accusation. "He just flat out says that's not true. Regardless if it was true, these are two teenagers and she said no and he respected that so I don't know what the issue is."

That's not the narrative that Christine Ford, Kavanaugh's accuser, has publicly stated. 

Ford, a psychology professor, wrote a letter to Sen. Dianne Feinstein in late July, accusing Kavanaugh of assaulting her at a party in a suburban Maryland home in the 1980's when they were both high school students. She described a drunken Kavanaugh pushing her into a bedroom, locking the door and getting on top of her while trying to disrobe her. She says he put his hand over her mouth and she feared he would inadvertently kill her.

She describes another student intervening, allowing her to escape. She told Sen. Feinstein she didn't want to discuss the assault and yet felt  "guilty and compelled as a citizen about the idea of not saying anything."

Graham told CBN News that his own life experiences have shaped his view. "There's a lot of things that I've done when I was a teenager that I'm certainly ashamed of and not proud of," he said. "And if we're going to hold people accountable for things that they did 40 years ago and say whether it's relevant or not relevant."

Graham has shared his rebellion as a young man many times over the years. He's recalled smoking, drinking and defying authority as typical patterns for him. At one point, he was kicked out of his Christian college for his behavior.

The Senate Judiciary Committee has asked both Judge Kavanaugh and Christine Ford to testify on Monday but it's not known yet whether Ford will appear. The committee is expected to vote on Kavanaugh's nomination next week.

Transcript from CBN News' Heather Sells talking with Rev. Franklin Graham about Judge Kavanaugh

Q-Rev. Graham you have blogged about the sexual assault allegation against Judge Kavanaugh saying the confirmation needs to move forward.  Do you think the Senate should disregard this accusation?

A-I don't think you'd disregard it but I think they're going to have to, no question, listen to it. But this accusation I guess was with Sen. Feinstein weeks ago so I think they've pulled it out here at the 11th hour for all political purposes and it's just a shame that a person like Judge Kavanaugh who has a stellar record that somebody can bring something up that he did when he was a teenager close to 40 years ago.  That's not relevant.  We've got to look at a person's life and what they've done as an adult and are they qualified for this position? So this is just an attempt to smear him. They couldn't find anything else in his record and so this is just an attempt to smear him and to smear his name and put a black dot on it. And I hope the Senate is smarter than this and they're not going to let this stop the process from moving forward and confirming this man.

Q-What message does it send to sexual abuse victims when they're told that it's not relevant something that happened years ago?

A-Well there wasn't a crime that was committed.  These are two teenagers and it's obvious that she said no and he respected it and walked away--if that's the case but he says he didn't do it.  He just flat out says that's just not true.  Regardless if it was true, these are two teenagers and she said no and he respected that so I don't know what the issue is. This is just an attempt to smear his name, that's all.

Q-Well I don't think she's saying he respected her decision. I think she's saying that someone else helped her flee the situation so, but it sounds like you think it's not relevant to him being considered on the high court.

A-No I really don't because how far back do we go Heather in a person's life? There's a lot of things that I've done when I was a teenager that I certainly am ashamed of and not proud of.  And If we're going to hold people accountable for things that they did 40 years ago and say whether it's relevant or not relevant.  This is a tactic by the left to try to keep conservatives off the bench and it's unfortunate that it's working. People are up in  arms over this like 'oh, this is  such a disaster.'  You're talking about two teenagers 40 years ago. That has nothing to do with what we're talking about today about this man being a judge on the Supreme court and they call it a sexual assault?  No, I don't believe it.

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