The woman, Christine Blasey Ford, told The Washington Post in her first interview that Mr Kavanaugh pinned her to a bed at a Maryland party they attended in the early 1980s, clumsily tried to remove her clothing and put his hand over her mouth when she tried to scream.
"I thought he might inadvertently kill me", she said. "He was trying to attack me and remove my clothing".
Feinstein issued a statement on Sunday afternoon in support of Ford and calling for the FBI to investigate the matter before the Senate advances Kavanaugh's nomination. Kavanaugh has repeatedly denied the allegations, reiterating again on Monday that he has never done "anything like what the accuser describes - to her or anyone".
'My client will do whatever is necessary to make sure that the Senate Judiciary Committee has the full story and the full set of allegations to allow them to make a fully informed decision, ' she said.
"For too long, when woman (sic) have made serious allegations of abuse, they have been ignored", the New York Democrat said.
But the Republicans only have a single-vote majority on the committee, which they control 11 to 10, while they hold the Senate by just 51-49. With a name and disturbing details, the accusation raised the prospect of congressional Republicans defending Trump's nominee ahead of midterm elections featuring an unprecedented number of female candidates and informed in part by the #MeToo movement.
Ms Feinstein on Sunday called on the FBI to investigate Ms Ford's story "before the Senate moves forward on this nominee". It's not yet clear if allegations by Ford will lead to new hearings for Kavanaugh as Hill's did for Thomas almost 27 years ago. Under Senate rules, the committee could forward the nomination to the Senate floor without an affirmative vote.
Nevertheless, we are working diligently to get to the bottom of these claims. "He is buoyed by the immediate outpouring of support from lifelong friends, including 65 women who knew him in high school and signed a letter on Thursday attesting to his character after initial news reports of the allegation".
Mark Judge, who has been named as the third person in the room, told The Weekly Standard the allegations were "absolutely nuts". The letter's contents leaked last week and Ford identified herself in an interview with the Washington Post published on Sunday.
University of Oklahoma law professor Anita Hill is sworn in before testifying before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Capitol Hill on October 11, 1991.
"This is about turnout", Mary Anne Marsh, a Democratic strategist from MA, said in a phone interview with Mic of the allegations' impact on the November vote.
It comes as the US Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer said on Monday that the FBI should reopen its background investigation into President Donald Trump's pick for Supreme Court judge. Feinstein acknowledged her knowledge of the accusation last week, but kept Ford's identity private until the Sunday Post article. Sen.
During his confirmation hearing, Democrats also brought up Bork's legal writings, including ones in which he criticized the Civil Rights Act as a "moral abomination", said women are not protected from gender discrimination and said he believed that couples didn't have a right to contraception.