Addressing a campaign rally in MS on Tuesday night, Trump cast doubt on Ford's allegation that Kavanaugh, his nominee for the USA supreme court, attempted to rape her when the two were teenagers in the early 1980s. "But somebody could accuse you of something, and you're automatically guilty". "I just say it's kind of appalling", Flake said of Trump's comments.
The fight over Kavanaugh's nomination to a lifetime job on the top U.S. court comes against the backdrop of the #MeToo movement fighting sexual harassment and assault that has toppled a succession of powerful men.
A White House official told CNN that the White House has made it clear to the Federal Bureau of Investigation that agents are not limited in their expanded background search.
Flake and Sens. Susan Collins of ME and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska were instrumental last week in holding up Kavanaugh's confirmation vote.
Democrats also bristled at Republican blame for delays in getting Judge Kavanaugh to the high court, saying that it was a Republican, Sen. The only consistency is their determination to keep Kavanaugh off the Supreme Court. The audience laughed as Trump, at times inaccurately, recounted what he described as holes in her testimony. "What's happening here has much more to do than the appointment of a Supreme Court judge".
"You could be somebody that was ideal your entire life and somebody could accuse you of something - doesn't necessarily have to be a woman - but somebody could accuse you of something and you're automatically guilty".
Mr Trump also pretended to be a son asking his mother how to respond to an accusation.
But he said they are not following up at all on Ramirez's account that Kavanaugh thrust his genitals in her face, forcing her to touch them without her consent, during an alcohol-fueled party when they were students at Yale University in the mid-1980s.
"What neighbourhood was it in?" "Where's the house? I don't know". 'I don't know.' Upstairs, downstairs?
'I was hoping to avoid getting on an airplane, ' she said.
McConnell's job of wrangling key Republican senators - he can afford to lose only one vote from his caucus - may have gotten harder after Trump decided the time was right to mock Ford's dramatic testimony to the Senate Judiciary Committee last week.
The President said Tuesday night that Kavanaugh's "life is in tatters". Kavanaugh denied the claims in follow-up testimony of his own.
The FBI's report will be given to all Senators, but it will not be released publicly, because, as Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky has put it, "That's the way these reports are always handled".
"It's certainly in the public's interest, and in the interests of many members on both sides of the aisle, to have transparency about the nature of these very public allegations", Congressional scholar Sarah Binder told me.
Speaking briefly to reporters, Collins said, "The president's comments were just plain wrong".
The FBI is nearing completion of its expanded investigation into sexual misconduct allegations against Kavanagh. "I don't know", he added, to cheers from supporters. But he also said Senate Republicans are determining the parameters of the investigation and "ultimately, they're making the judgment".
Garrett's lawyer, William Sullivan, says Garrett has voluntarily cooperated with the FBI's reopened background check of Kavanaugh and has finished his interview. Judge has previously denied any memory of such an incident.
It was a striking change of tactic after the United States president had opted to show restraint towards Christine Blasey Ford, and called her a "very credible witness" during her Senate testimony against Judge Brett Kavanaugh last week. "What's happening now? They had gang rape, gang rape, so many times". Chuck Grassley repeated his request for notes from Ford's therapy sessions, details of her communications with The Washington Post and any recordings of her taking a lie detector test. "They said, 'Someday he will be a Supreme Court judge'".
"In this era of #MeToo, there are a lot of men - and some women - who believe that justice no longer exists in America", Luntz said.
Ford said Kavanaugh tried to remove her clothes and held his hand over her mouth to prevent her from screaming.