U.S. Supreme Court nominee judge Brett Kavanaugh testifies during his Senate Judiciary Committee confirmation hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., September 5, 2018. Ford alleges Judge Brett Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her more than 30 years ago when they were teenagers.
'She wishes to testify, provided that we can agree on terms that are fair and which ensure her safety, ' Katz wrote in an email to the committee earlier on Thursday.
"A hearing on Monday is not possible and the Committee's insistence that it occur then is arbitrary in any event", Katz added. Kavanaugh and his wife also had received threats, a senior White House official said. The scheduling of the Monday hearing was already a delay on Kavanaugh's confirmation process, which included four days of public hearings at which Ford's allegations were never mentioned and was set for a committee vote Thursday. But Ford and her lawyers are obviously making the most of charges of insensitivity to tilt the playing field in her direction, or to avoid having to testify at all.
The phone call, between Ford lawyers Debra Katz and Lisa Banks, Grassley and ranking committee Democrat Dianne Feinstein, ended without any formal agreement to testify, the sources said.
And given Republicans' Senate majority - and the unity emerging behind Kavanaugh - that meant he was nearly certainly going to be confirmed to the Court. Kavanaugh's confirmation would be the second of the Trump administration and solidify conservative control of the nation's top court.
US Capitol Police said 56 protesters were arrested in Senate office buildings during demonstrations against Kavanaugh on Thursday.
The mostly female demonstrators wore pins reading: "I believe Christine Blasey Ford".
Judge Kavanaugh has issued a fresh rebuttal of the allegation.
The discussions have revived the possibility that the panel will hold an electrifying campaign-season hearing at which both Ford and Kavanaugh can give their versions of what did or didn't happen at a party in the 1980s.
Kavanaugh vehemently denies Ford's allegations, and Republicans have gathered statements from the judge's schoolmates, ex-girlfriends, and a witness who was supposedly present when the attack took place, testifying to his character.
According to the Washington Post, Ford, who had also contacted the newspaper in July, chose to go public after it became clear people were learning her identity. Susan Collins of ME and Jeff Flake of Arizona - said that unless Ford testified Monday they would move on to Kavanagh's vote.
The tweet was Trump's strongest indication of support for Brett Kavanaugh yet, after the president had spent much of the week vowing he would listen respectfully to Ford's allegations.