Sadly, since coming forward with accusations of sexual assault against Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh, Dr. Christine Blasey Ford and her family have received numerous death threats. During that time, Kavanaugh and his family have also received horrific treatment. Despite the seriousness all around, ABC’s World News Tonight sided with Ford on Thursday by choosing to only report the threats to her and threw those against Kavanaugh in the trash.
“Dr. Christine Blasey Ford longer holding out for an FBI investigation into her claims before she testifies, saying she will answer questions, but asking for certain conditions, including her safety,” announced anchor David Muir at the top of the program.
As congressional correspondent Mary Bruce began her very pro-Ford report, she noted the threats made against the accuser:
In an e-mail to the Senate Judiciary Committee, Ford's lawyer writing, "She wishes to testify, provided that we can agree on terms that are fair and which ensure her safety." Ford and her children have been forced to leave their home to escape harassment, even death threats.
The complete transcript of the segment is provided below. It shows that that was the last time any mention of death threats was made by either Bruce or Muir.
In sharp contrast, both the CBS Evening News and NBC Nightly News found the few seconds needed to mention the death threats against Kavanaugh and his family. “CBS News has confirmed that he and his wife have received multiple death threats, and that the U.S. marshals are now investigating,” reported CBS congressional correspondent Nancy Cordes.
“Kavanaugh and his family have also received threats and hateful e-mails. But the source tonight saying, Kavanaugh remains determined and hopeful,” noted NBC White House correspondent Peter Alexander.
Bruce also pounced on a few gaffes by GOP lawmakers to make them look insensitive. “The Senate's most vulnerable Republican, Dean Heller of Nevada, defended Kavanaugh, referring to the sexual ass allegations as ‘a little hiccup’,” she huffed. “And in South Carolina, Republican Congressman Ralph Norman is turning the debate into a joke.”
But she failed to report on Democratic Congressman Eric Swalwell (CA) mocking threats against Republican Senator Susan Collins (ME). In a ridiculous tweet on Thursday (which has since deleted and apologized for), Swalwell lashed out at Collins for talking about her threats: “Boo hoo hoo. You’re a senator who police will protect. A sexual assault victim can’t sleep in her home tonight because of threats.” This comes just 11 days after Swalwell’s opponent narrowly escaped a knife attack (an attack ABC ignored).
While CBS and NBC did note the threats to Kavanaugh, they (and ABC) ignored an attempt by Wisconsin Democratic Senator Tammy Baldwin to hold a $1,000 entry fundraiser featuring Ford’s lawyers at their law firm. The event was called off after CNN’s Manu Raju dug into it.
This abdication of reporting just goes to show who’s side the liberal networks were on.
The transcript is below, click "expand" to read:
ABC's World News Tonight
September 20, 2018
6:31 p.m. Eastern
DAVID MUIR: We begin with the Supreme Court showdown. And tonight it does now appear that we will hear from Brett Kavanaugh's accuser. Dr. Christine Blasey Ford longer holding out for an FBI investigation into her claims before she testifies, saying she will answer questions, but asking for certain conditions, including her safety. Judge Kavanaugh seen briefly today at the White House. He is reported to have been preparing in recent days for the questions he will be asked. So tonight, just how soon could this happen? Mary Bruce leading us off on Capitol Hill again tonight.
[Cuts to video]
MARY BRUCE: Tonight, Christine Blasey Ford says she is willing to tell the Senate at Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her. As today, anger roared through the halls of the Capitol.
In an e-mail to the Senate Judiciary Committee, Ford's lawyer writing, "She wishes to testify, provided that we can agree on terms that are fair and which ensure her safety." Ford and her children have been forced to leave their home to escape harassment, even death threats. Her lawyer says she is willing to answer questions next week, but "a hearing on Monday is not possible."
The office of Republican Chairman Chuck Grassley is welcoming the new open line of communication. Grassley has said Ford could appear publically or privately.
SEN. CHUCK GRASLEY: We've gone beyond what we did the first day of just having the hearing she asked for, the open hearing she asked for, because we heard she might not want to come in that environment, so, we offered one more closed session or two ways of doing it by transcript.
BRUCE: But Republicans refused Ford's initial demand for an FBI investigation. Ford’s lawyers says that investigation is still "her strong preference," but she’s no longer insisting on it. Earlier in the day, Democratic Senators urged Ford to stand her ground.
SEN. KIRSTEN GILLIBRAND: They should be able to start that investigation right now.
BRUCE: But they don’t seem willing to.
GILLIBRAND: If the American people speak out loud enough about how important this is to them, they might change their mind.
BRUCE: And if they don't?
[ Cheers ]
GILLIBRAND: I think we have to keep fighting.
BRUCE: This high stakes political battle is playing out with the critical midterm elections just weeks away. Lawmakers keenly aware their constituents are watching what they say and how they vote. And tonight, some Republicans are being slammed as tone deaf.
The Senate's most vulnerable Republican, Dean Heller of Nevada, defended Kavanaugh, referring to the sexual ass allegations as "a little hiccup." And in South Carolina, Republican Congressman Ralph Norman is turning the debate into a joke.
REP. RALPH NORMAN: Did y'all hear the latest late-breaking news from the Kavanaugh hearings? Ruth Bader Ginsburg came out that she was groped by Abraham Lincoln.
[Cuts back to live]
MUIR: That moment from a debate in South Carolina today. And Mary Bruce live back up on the Hill tonight. And Mary, President Trump and Senate Republicans do not want the FBI to investigate these sexual assault allegations against Judge Kavanaugh to, in essence, reopen his background check.
But remind us tonight, what did President George H. W. Bush do when Anita Hill came forward against Clarence Thomas?
BRUCE: Well David, in 1991, President George H. W. Bush ordered the FBI to investigate. That investigation took just three days. It's now been two days since Christine Blasey Ford asked the FBI to investigate her charges. But so far, President Trump has refused that request? David.
MUIR: Mary Bruce, leading us off tonight. Mary, thank you.