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Comment-by-comment analysis of Christine Blasey Ford statement

Posted by John T. Reed on

I am here today not because I want to be. I am terrified. 
irrelevant; attempt to acquire credibility via sympathy; She is a 51 year-old college professor who essentially makes her living as a public speaker. To get a PhD, she was subjected to a panel of professors questioning her competence in her PhD field.


I am here because I believe it is my civic duty to tell you what happened to me while Brett Kavanaugh and I were in high school.

There is no such duty. What we know for sure is that she is trying to do is prevent Kavanaugh from being confirmed as a Supreme Court justice. Her statements about her motives are mere self-serving assertions. Her motives are irrelevant but if anyone cares they should ask what other civic duties she has fulfilled like voting, serving on a jury, serving in the military, serving in a government job that pay less than she could get in a private job.
I have described the events publicly before. I summarized them in my letter to Ranking Member Feinstein, and again in my letter to Chairman Grassley. I understand and appreciate the importance of your hearing from me directly about what happened to me and the impact it has had on my life and on my family.
What happened to her is relevant. The impact it had on her and her family is irrelevant and another attempt to acquire credibility via sympathy
I grew up in the suburbs of Washington, D.C. I attended the Holton-Arms School in Bethesda, Maryland, from 1980 to 1984. Holton-Arms is an all-girls school that opened in 1901. During my time at the school, girls at Holton-Arms frequently met and became friendly with boys from all-boys schools in the area, including Landon School, Georgetown Prep, Gonzaga High School, country clubs, and other places where kids and their families socialized. 
This is how I met Brett Kavanaugh, the boy who sexually assaulted me.
conclusory statement; violates Federal Rule of evidence against the witness stating a legal conclusion; that is for the jury to say; Ford is there to provide just the facts, ma’am
In my freshman and sophomore school years, when I was 14 and 15 years old, my group of friends intersected with Brett and his friends for a short period of time. I had been friendly with a classmate of Brett’s for a short time during my freshman year, and it was through that connection that I attended a number of parties that Brett also attended. We did not know each other well, but I knew him and he knew me.


Her statement that he knew her is not necessarily true just because she says it

In the summer of 1982, like most summers, I spent almost every day at the Columbia Country Club in Chevy Chase, Maryland swimming and practicing diving.
One evening that summer, after a day of swimming at the club, I attended a small gathering at a house in the Chevy Chase/Bethesda area. There were four boys I remember being there: Brett Kavanaugh, Mark Judge, P.J. Smyth, and one other boy whose name I cannot recall.
legitimate testimony on its face; I cannot tell if it is true
I remember my friend Leland Ingham attending.
So that’s at least five boys. Don’t know why she separated Ingham and the others.
I do not remember all of the details of how that gathering came together, but like many that summer, it was almost surely a spur of the moment gathering.
probably irrelevant
I truly wish I could provide detailed answers to all of the questions that have been and will be asked about how I got to the party, where it took place, and so forth. I don’t have all the answers, and I don’t remember as much as I would like to. 
meaningless self-serving statement; essentially, she is saying she is credible in spite of a self-servingly selective memory
But the details about that night that bring me here today are ones I will never forget. 
Self-serving excuses for her self-servingly selective memory.


  They have been seared into my memory and have haunted me episodically as an adult.

Interesting choice of words; John Kerry said his being in Cambodia was seared into his memory when he was in Vietnam. In fact, he was never in or even near Cambodia. 

On the floor of the Senate on March 27, 1986, Sen. John Kerry issued this statement: “I remember Christmas of 1968 sitting on a gunboat in Cambodia. I remember what it was like to be shot at by Vietnamese and Khmer Rouge and Cambodians, and have the President of the United States telling the American people that I was not there; the troops were not in Cambodia. I have that memory which is seared — seared — in me.”

Mr. Kerry’s statement at the time was similar to other statements he had made after returning from duty in Vietnam, and throughout much of the 1970s. Writing for the Boston Herald in October 1979, Mr. Kerry said this: “I remember spending Christmas Eve of 1968 five miles across the Cambodian border being shot at by our South Vietnamese allies who were drunk and celebrating Christmas. The absurdity of almost being killed by our own allies in a country in which President Nixon claimed there were no American troops was very real.”

First, the obvious: Richard Nixon was not president in December 1968, and no history of the Vietnam era suggests that Lyndon Johnson ever ordered troops into Cambodia; but those are minor points. A new book, “Unfit for Command: Swift Boat Veterans Speak Out Against John Kerry,” by John O’Neill and Jerome R. Corsi, argues that Mr. Kerry was never in Cambodia, during Christmas 1968 or otherwise. To support their allegation, Messrs. O’Neill and Corsi highlight the denials of all living commanders in Mr. Kerry’s chain of command that Mr. Kerry was in Cambodia, or was ever ordered into Cambodia (Joe Streuhli, commander of Coastal Division 13; George Elliott, commander of Coastal Division 11; Adrian Lonsdale, captain, Coast Guard, commander, Coastal Surveillance Center at An Thoi; Rear Adm. Ray Hoffman, commander Coastal Surveillance Force Vietnam; and Rear Adm. Art Price, commander of River Patrol Force). Also, the authors report that three out of Mr. Kerry’s five-man Swift boat crew deny that they or their boat was in Cambodia during Christmas 1968 — the other two refused to comment.

When I got to the small gathering, people were drinking beer in a small living room on the first floor of the house. I drank one beer that evening.
Oh, suddenly an amazingly great memory of how many beers one day she drank 36 years ago when she can’t remember the location, name of an attendee, etc. Like I said, a self-servingly selective memory.
Brett and Mark were visibly drunk.
legitimate statement but may not be true
Early in the evening, I went up a narrow set of stairs leading from the living room to a second floor to use the bathroom. When I got to the top of the stairs, I was pushed from behind into a bedroom. I couldn’t see who pushed me. Brett and Mark came into the bedroom and locked the door behind them. There was music already playing in the bedroom. It was turned up louder by either Brett or Mark once we were in the room. I was pushed onto the bed and Brett got on top of me. He began running his hands over my body and grinding his hips into me. I yelled, hoping someone downstairs might hear me, and tried to get away from him, but his weight was heavy.
This is the accusation and legitimate testimony about the matter in question. That does not mean it is true.
Brett groped me and tried to take off my clothes. He had a hard time because he was so drunk, and because I was wearing a one-piece bathing suit under my clothes.
This involves some mind reading of the assailant. The factual version would have been “he seemed to be trying to take my clothes off but did not succeed.”
I believed he was going to rape me.
more mind reading
I tried to yell for help. When I did, Brett put his hand over my mouth to stop me from screaming. 
legitimate testimony but may not be true
This was what terrified me the most, and has had the most lasting impact on my life.
irrelevant; sounds like an argument for a higher amount of damages in a civil case
It was hard for me to breathe, and I thought that Brett was accidentally going to kill me.
legitimate testimony although the kill me is speculative and would probably only be relevant as an explanation for a lethal force self-defense action.
Both Brett and Mark were drunkenly laughing during the attack. They both seemed to be having a good time.
Irrelevant and more mind reading by Ford; attempt to sway the jury with emotion rather than facts
Mark was urging Brett on, although at times he told Brett to stop.
Relates only to whether Mark should be confirmed as a Supreme Court justice; also gives Ford a way to explain why Mark does not corroborate her story
  A couple of times I made eye contact with Mark and thought he might try to help me, but he did not.
irrelevant; the facts needed are those that relate to the essential elements of the crime alleged; this is unrelated to any element of the alleged crime.
During this assault, Mark came over and jumped on the bed twice while Brett was on top of me. The last time he did this, we toppled over and Brett was no longer on top of me. I was able to get up and run out of the room. Directly across from the bedroom was a small bathroom. I ran inside the bathroom and locked the door.
legitimate testimony if true
I heard Brett and Mark leave the bedroom laughing and loudly walk down the narrow stairs, pin-balling off the walls on the way down.
irrelevant; seeks to stir emotions not provide relevant facts; Pin-balling off the walls does not strike me an an audible thing at a party where the music has been turned up loud
I waited and when I did not hear them come back up the stairs, I left the bathroom, ran down the stairs, through the living room, and left the house. 
Legitimate testimony but could have been stated more succinctly as “I then left the house.”
I remember being on the street and feeling an enormous sense of relief that I had escaped from the house and that Brett and Mark were not coming after me.
irrelevant; emotional rather than probative
Brett’s assault on me drastically altered my life. For a very long time, I was too afraid and ashamed to tell anyone the details. I did not want to tell my parents that I, at age 15, was in a house without any parents present, drinking beer with boys. I tried to convince myself that because Brett did not rape me, I should be able to move on and just pretend that it had never happened. Over the years, I told very few friends that I had this traumatic experience. I told my husband before we were married that I had experienced a sexual assault.
irrelevant; more pleading for a higher emotional distress damage amount in a civil suit; trying to achieve credibility via sympathy; the hearing is about what Kavanaugh may have done, not how Ford feels about it
I had never told the details to anyone until May 2012, during a couples counseling session. 
Contemporaneous records can be admitted in some cases or sued to refresh recollection, but they can also be inaccurate or deliberate lies, and when they are created 30 years after the fact, they are not very contemporaneous; also, she did not mention Kavanaugh in this session.
The reason this came up in counseling is that my husband and I had completed an extensive remodel of our home, and I insisted on a second front door, an idea that he and others disagreed with and could not understand. In explaining why I wanted to have a second front door, I described the assault in detail.
evidence that she is nuts and a drama queen; She is obviously not the only person ever assaulted—combat vets come to mind—but she may be the only survivor of an assault with a second front door. A concealed-carry permit would make more sense, although not if it only came up 30 years after the assault. How many front doors did she have during the prior 30 years?
I recall saying that the boy who assaulted me could someday be on the U.S. Supreme Court and spoke a bit about his background. My husband recalls that I named my attacker as Brett Kavanaugh.
Husband needs to testify about what he recalls, not her. She needs to waive spousal privilege for that. If she does, a trial opponent could ask the husband all sorts of other pertinent questions.
After that May 2012 therapy session, I did my best to suppress memories of the assault because recounting the details caused me to relive the experience, and caused panic attacks and anxiety. Occasionally I would discuss the assault in individual therapy, but talking about it caused me to relive the trauma, so I tried not to think about it or discuss it. But over the years, I went through periods where I thought about Brett’s attack. I confided in some close friends that I had an experience with sexual assault.
irrelevant; attempt to achieve credibility via sympathy; need the friends to testify under oath
Occasionally I stated that my assailant was a prominent lawyer or judge but I did not use his name.
So not pertinent to this case.
I do not recall each person I spoke to about Brett’s assault, and some friends have reminded me of these conversations since the publication of The Washington Post story on September 16, 2018.
name them and have them testify
But until July 2018, I had never named Mr. Kavanaugh as my attacker outside of therapy.
Not good for credibility that he was the assailant. In 2018, he was a huge Democrat target and Ford is an activist  Democrat.
This all changed in early July 2018. I saw press reports stating that Brett Kavanaugh was on the “short list” of potential Supreme Court nominees. I thought it was my civic duty to relay the information I had about Mr. Kavanaugh’s conduct so that those considering his potential nomination would know about the assault.
irrelevant; politics, not facts about whether Kavanaugh committed the crime
I did not use my name, but I provided the names of Brett Kavanaugh and Mark Judge. I stated that Mr. Kavanaugh had assaulted me in the 1980s in Maryland. This was an extremely hard thing for me to do, but I felt I couldn’t NOT do it. Over the next two days, I told a couple of close friends on the beach in California that Mr. Kavanaugh had sexually assaulted me. I was conflicted about whether to speak out.
irrelevant, plea for sympathy
The rest of it essentially whines about the heat in the political kitchen and protests repeatedly but utterly against the obvious facts that she did not want to go public. The obvious way to do that would to have refrained from sending out a statement to anyone. She protesteth too much and testifieth too much for her protestations of not wanting to do this to be believed. She is also a flake with her two front doors and saying she did not want to fly to DC when she was already in DE.

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