FBI Report Near Completion; Senators To Access Single Copy In Senate Safe

The FBI is nearly finished with their supplemental report on sexual misconduct allegations against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, after which they will send a single copy to Capitol Hill where it will be held in a Senate Judiciary Committee safe, two senior Senate sources told Fox News on Wednesday. 

Senate Democratic Whip Dick Durbin (Il), a member of the Judiciary Committee, said that preparations are underway to review the report on Thursday, while Republicans are putting strict limits on the viewing. 

According to Durbin, the one copy will be taken from the safe and made available to senators - with each party taking turns viewing it in one-hour increments. 

“Get this — one copy! For the United States Senate,” he said. “That’s what we were told. And we were also that we would be given one hour for the Dems, one hour for the Republicans. Alternating.

“We tried to reserve some time to read it. That is ridiculous,” he said. “One copy?!”

“Bizarre, it doesn’t make any sense,” he added. -The Hill

A senior Democratic aide confirmed the restrictive viewing conditions to The Hill, which notes that if all 100 senators decide to review the document and it takes each senator 30 minutes to read it, it could take up to 50 hours for the entire chamber to examine it. 

"Do the math," said Durbin. "That’s a lot of time."

Senator Bob Corker (R-TN) says that Senators will be able to view the FBI report in the "secure compartmented information facility" in the Capitol Visitor Center, which is large enough to hold a large group of senators. Corker has urged Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-IA) to make several copies. 

Republican aides, however, say that alternating a single copy of an FBI background report between parties is typical practice for judicial nominees. 

Judiciary Committee Republicans on Tuesday tweeted out a 2009 memorandum of understanding stating that photocopying or other reproduction of the FBI background reports is prohibited.

It also states that notes and memoranda derived from the contents of the FBI background investigation reports may be made and shall be destroyed or secured in the same manner as the reports themselves.

Reports are considered confidential Senate Judiciary Committee documents and unauthorized disclosure of them is subject to punishment under the Senate rules. -The Hill

It is unclear whether any of the FBI report will be made public, however Senator John Thune (R-SD), the third-ranking Republican in the Senate, told Fox News that "some of it will probably make its way out into the public and into the mainstream." 

"But most importantly, at least right now, is that all senators who are going to have the responsibility to vote on this nomination have an opportunity to review it, assess it and come to their own conclusions about what’s in there."

And regardless of what the FBI concludes, we anticipate it won't satisfy Democrats, who are already up in arms over the fact that the agency didn't interview Kavanaugh accuser, Christine Blasey Ford or Kavanaugh as part of the probe, with sources saying that their congressional testimony last week was sufficient. 

Tags