FBI Reportedly Reaches Out to Second Kavanaugh Accuser

The FBI has reached out to the second woman who accused Brett Kavanaugh of sexual assault as part of its new investigation into the Supreme Court nominee, The Washington Post reported Saturday, citing people familiar with the investigation.

It was not immediately clear whether the FBI had yet interviewed Deborah Ramirez, who alleged in a report published Sept. 23 by The New Yorker magazine that Kavanaugh exposed himself to her at a drunken dormitory party. She said he shoved his penis in her face, forcing her to touch it while pushing him away. 

Ramirez said the the assault occurred during the 1983-84 school year at Yale University, where they both were students.

The Post said the FBI was also following up on accusations by Christine Blasey Ford, the first woman who accused Kavanaugh. Her story dated to 1982, when they were both teenagers. She said he sexually assaulted her at a gathering at a home in suburban Washington. Kavanaugh has angrily denied the allegation.

Both told their stories to the Senate Judiciary Committee separately Thursday in lengthy hearings.

President Donald Trump ordered the additional FBI investigation Friday at the request of the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Trump posted on Twitter Friday night:

​Trump said in a statement that the additional investigation “must be limited in scope” and “completed in less than one week.”

The decision was a reversal for the administration, which had argued that Kavanaugh already was vetted.

WATCH: Kavanaugh Moves Step Closer to Confirmation, But With a Hitch 

Earlier Friday, the Judiciary Committee voted to send Kavanaugh’s nomination for the Supreme Court to the full Senate after securing a party-line vote in favor of the nod, but Arizona Republican Jeff Flake requested a delay in the floor vote and the additional investigation.

“This country is being ripped apart here, and we’ve got to make sure that we do due diligence,” Flake said.

Another Republican senator, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, said Friday that she agreed with Flake’s call for additional FBI investigation.

Republicans hold a slim 51-49 margin in the Senate. Kavanaugh needs at least 50 votes to have his nomination confirmed. Vice President Mike Pence would cast the deciding vote if the Senate was evenly split. If all Democrats vote against Kavanaugh, two Republicans would have to do the same to block his confirmation.

Kavanaugh said in a statement released by the White House that he would continue to cooperate with the FBI and the Senate.

“Throughout this process, I’ve been interviewed by the FBI, I’ve done a number of ‘background’ calls directly with the Senate, and yesterday, I answered questions under oath about every topic the senators and their counsel asked me. I’ve done everything they have requested and will continue to cooperate,” he said.

In another development Friday, a high school friend of Kavanaugh, Mark Judge, said he was willing to cooperate with any FBI investigation. Judge is likely to figure prominently in any inquiry by the FBI, because Ford contends he was present when Kavanaugh assaulted her at the suburban Washington party. Judge has denied being at any party with Ford when an attack took place.


Trump Optimistic About New Kavanaugh Inquiry

Amid a new investigation of his Supreme Court nominee, U.S. President Donald Trump maintained his support for Judge Brett Kavanaugh on Saturday, saying that “hopefully, at the conclusion, everything will be fine.” 

Trump, speaking to reporters on the White House South Lawn prior to his departure for a political rally in nearby West Virginia, noted that the FBI “is all over, talking to everybody,” including women who have accused Kavanaugh of sexual misconduct, and “I would expect it’s going to turn out very well for the judge.” 

The president also accused opposition Democrats of acting terribly and dishonestly during the Kavanaugh confirmation process. He expressed anger about the leak of Christine Blasey Ford’s accusation against Kavanaugh, which she sent to a congresswoman but had previously requested remain confidential. 

Despite what Trump told reporters, news reports indicated the White House might be limiting the scope of the FBI’s investigation — such as not permitting scrutiny of the claims of another woman, Julie Swetnick, who has accused Kavanaugh of sexual misconduct at parties while he was a prep school student. 

Trump administration officials also denied they were restricting areas of inquiry.

“The scope and duration has been set by the Senate,” according to a statement by White House spokesman Raj Shah. “The White House is letting FBI agents do what they are trained to do.”

News reports said the FBI had contacted Deborah Ramirez, the second of Kavanaugh’s accusers. The Associated Press reported that Ramirez’s lawyer, John Clune, said she had agreed to cooperate with agents. 

Ramirez alleged in a report published Sept. 23 by The New Yorker magazine that Kavanaugh exposed himself at a drunken dormitory party and shoved his penis in her face, forcing her to touch it while pushing him away. She said the the assault occurred during the 1983-84 school year at Yale University, where they both were students.

The FBI was also following up on accusations by Ford, the first woman who accused Kavanaugh. Her story dated to 1982, when they were teenagers. She said he sexually assaulted her at a gathering at a home in suburban Washington. Kavanaugh has angrily denied the allegation.

Both told their stories to the Senate Judiciary Committee separately Thursday in lengthy hearings.

Trump ordered the new investigation Friday at the request of the Judiciary Committee. The consent for a fresh probe was a concession by the Trump administration and Republicans, who had strongly contended that Kavanaugh was thoroughly vetted numerous times. 

WATCH: Kavanaugh Moves Step Closer to Confirmation, But With a Hitch 

The Judiciary Committee voted Friday to send Kavanaugh’s nomination for the Supreme Court to the full Senate after securing a party-line vote in favor of the nod, but Arizona Republican Jeff Flake requested a delay in the floor vote and the additional investigation.

“This country is being ripped apart here, and we’ve got to make sure that we do due diligence,” Flake said.

Another Republican senator, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, said Friday that she agreed with Flake’s call for additional FBI investigation.

Republicans hold a slim 51-49 margin in the Senate. Kavanaugh needs at least 50 votes to have his nomination confirmed. Vice President Mike Pence would cast the deciding vote if the Senate was evenly split. If all Democrats vote against Kavanaugh, two Republicans would have to do the same to block his confirmation.

Kavanaugh said in a statement released by the White House that he would continue to cooperate with the FBI and the Senate.

“Throughout this process, I’ve been interviewed by the FBI, I’ve done a number of ‘background’ calls directly with the Senate, and yesterday, I answered questions under oath about every topic the senators and their counsel asked me. I’ve done everything they have requested and will continue to cooperate,” he said.

In another development Friday, a high school friend of Kavanaugh, Mark Judge, said he was willing to cooperate with any FBI investigation. Judge is likely to figure prominently in any inquiry by the FBI, because Ford contends he was present when Kavanaugh assaulted her at the suburban Washington party. Judge has denied being at any party with Ford when an attack took place.


У Дніпрі відзначає 100-річчя перший український державний театр

У Дніпрі 29 вересня своє 100-річчя відзначає перший державний драматичний театр України – Дніпровський академічний український музично-драматичний театр імені Шевченка.

Святкування розгорнули на площі біля театру. На сцені просто неба колектив ювіляра своїми виступами вітають колеги з різних регіонів України, а також заклади культури й мистецтва Дніпра, повідомляє кореспондент Радіо Свобода.

До дня народження театр підготував кілька фотозон із використанням декорацій до своїх вистав, де фотографуються глядачі. Окрім того, на площі перед закладом розгорнули ярмарок майстрів народного мистецтва, виставку українського народного строю, експозицію ретроавтомобілів, працюють «живі скульптури».

Цього ж дня театр урочисто відкриває свій 101-й сезон виставою «Нація» за романом Марії Матіос, а також театральний фестиваль «Феєрія Дніпра». У рамках цього заходу упродовж тижня 10 театрів із різних міст України показуватимуть свої вистави.

Дніпропетровський академічний український музично-драматичний театр імені Шевченка – найстаріший державний драматичний театр України. Він був заснований у Києві 23 серпня 1918 року рішенням Уряду Української народної республіки гетьмана Скоропадського. Першою виставою була «Лісова пісня» Лесі Українки. У перші десятиріччя існування театру в ньому працювали Лесь Курбас, Іван Мар’яненко, Ганна Борисоглібська, Любов Гаккебуш, Михайло. Тінський, Наталія Ужвій.

За часів Радянського Союзу театр, заснований урядом Скоропадського, хоч і був перейменований на Перший державний драматичний театр УРСР імені Шевченка, виявився «небажаним» у Києві. 1927 року йому запропонували працювати далі в Дніпропетровську.

Заклад розташувався у збудованій 1913 року будівлі англійського клубу, де він працює і нині.

«Шевченківці» постійно провадять доброчинну діяльність, даючи безкоштовні концерти і вистави у військових частинах, шпиталях, а також на сході України.

Цього року театр одержав статус національного.


#ЯХочуДихати: у Запоріжжі відбулася акція за «чисте повітря»

Під стінами Запорізької міської ради 29 вересня відбулася акція, учасники якої вимагають забезпечити їхнє право на чисте повітря.

Як повідомляє кореспондент Радіо Свобода, захід відбувся у формі флешмобу, під час якого активісти у медичних пов’язках, респіраторах і протигазах грали у футбол, бадмінтон і волейбол.

Учасники акції кажуть, що таким чином намагалися продемонструвати парадоксальність ситуації, коли окремі підприємства-забруднювачі повітря спонсорують спортивні заходи, нібито дбаючи про здоров’я городян, замість того, щоб інвестування коштів у модернізацію власного виробництва.

Активісти підготували звернення до президента, уряду й Міністерства екології з вимогою внести зміни до чинного законодавства, зокрема, зобов’язати всі підприємства-забруднювачі встановити на всі джерела викидів автоматичні датчики, дані з яких мають в онлайн-режимі публікуватися у відкритому доступі в інтернеті, щоб кожен громадянин мав до них доступ. 

«Щоб можна було побачити потягом доби, яке підприємство в який час скільки викидає в атмосферу, щоб кожен громадянин міг, відповідно, подати позов на підприємство, яке перевищує допустимі викиди і відшкодувати шкоду, завдану йому здоров’ю. Зараз, на жаль, система моніторингу не дозволяє встановити причетних до викидів… Всі ці мобільні лабораторії, стаціонарні пости вони фіксують лише кількість перевищень допустимих викидів у конкретному місці, тобто ми не можемо визначити, який саме завод сьогодні отруює нас і, відповідно, притягнути до відповідальності», – розповів один з організаторів акції Денис Тарасов. 

Аналогічні акції #ЯХочуДихати сьогодні також відбуваються у Маріуполі та Кривому Розі.

За даними Центральної геофізичної обсерваторії імені Срезневського за січень-червень 2018 року, Запоріжжя входить до числа українських міст із високим рівнем забруднення атмосфери.


New FBI Investigation Begins Into Kavanaugh

The FBI has launched a new investigation of Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh.

President Donald Trump ordered the investigation at the request of the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Trump posted on Twitter Friday night:

Trump said in a statement the updated investigation, which follows sexual misconduct allegations, “must be limited in scope” and “completed in less than one week.”

The decision is a reversal for the administration, which had argued that Kavanaugh had been vetted.

WATCH: Kavanaugh Moves Step Closer to Confirmation, But With a Hitch

​Due diligence

Earlier Friday, the Senate Judiciary Committee voted to send Kavanaugh’s nomination for the Supreme Court to the full Senate after securing a vote in favor of Kavanaugh’s nomination from Republican Jeff Flake, who requested a delay and investigation.

The committee of 11 Republicans and 10 Democrats voted along party lines to move the nomination forward.

“This country is being ripped apart here, and we’ve got to make sure that we do due diligence,” Flake said.

Another Republican senator, Lisa Murkowski, said Friday she agrees with Flake in wanting an FBI investigation. Because Republicans hold a slim 51-49 margin in the Senate, they have little choice now but to slow down the process to confirm Kavanaugh.

Republican leaders said Friday they still plan to move ahead with a procedural vote on Kavanaugh’s nomination Saturday.

​Kavanaugh to cooperate

Kavanaugh said in a statement released by the White House that he will continue to cooperate with the FBI and the Senate. 

“Throughout this process, I’ve been interviewed by the FBI, I’ve done a number of ‘background’ calls directly with the Senate, and yesterday, I answered questions under oath about every topic the senators and their counsel asked me. I’ve done everything they have requested and will continue to cooperate,” he said.

The developments come one day after dramatic testimony by Kavanaugh and Christine Blasey Ford, a woman who has accused him of sexual assault when they were teenagers in 1982. Both told their stories to the Senate Judiciary Committee separately in lengthy hearings.

Kavanaugh has angrily denied the allegation that he sexually assaulted Ford at a gathering at a home in suburban Washington.

Kavanaugh needs at least 50 votes to be confirmed by the 100 member Senate. Vice President Mike Pence would cast the deciding vote if the Senate is evenly split. If all Democrats vote against Kavanaugh, two Republicans would also have to do the same to block his confirmation.

In another development Friday, a high school friend of Kavanaugh, Mark Judge, says he is willing to cooperate with any FBI investigation. Judge is likely to figure prominently in any inquiry by the FBI as Ford claims he was present when Kavanaugh allegedly attacked her at a party. Judge has denied being at any party with Ford when an attack took place.

 

WATCH: Personal and Political Debates Collide in Emotional US Supreme Court Fight

How key senators will vote

Also Friday, several Democrats from states that Trump won announced they would vote against Kavanaugh.

Democratic Senator Joe Donnelly from Indiana said he would vote against the appellate court judge. Donnelly said Ford’s sexual assault accusation against Kavanaugh was “disturbing and credible” and repeated a Democratic call for the FBI investigation.

Senator Doug Jones, a first-term Democrat from Alabama, a state in which President Donald Trump won by a wide margin, said Thursday he is voting ‘no’ on Kavanaugh’s bid for the Supreme Court. 

“The Kavanaugh nomination process has been flawed from the beginning,” he said, adding that Ford was credible and courageous.

Democratic Senator Bill Nelson of swing state Florida also said Thursday he would vote against Kavanaugh. Republicans are trying to gain the vote of Democratic Senator Joe Manchin of West Virginia, a state that Trump won comfortably, along with Republican Senators Susan Collins of Maine and Murkowski of Alaska.

Senator Heidi Heitkamp, a Democrat from North Dakota, also said she needs time to decide how she will vote. She is running for re-election in a state that voted heavily for Trump.

​Bar association request

The American Bar Association late Thursday called on the Judiciary committee and the full Senate to delay the vote until the FBI has time to do a full background check on the claims made by Ford and other women.

“We make this request because of the ABA’s respect for the rule of law and due process under law,’’ the ABA letter to committee leadership said. “Each appointment to our nation’s highest court [as with all others] is simply too important to rush to a vote.”

Earlier Friday, committee Chairman Charles Grassley flatly dismissed the ABA’s request, saying, “I’ve explained many times an FBI investigation is not necessary. The ABA is an outside organization like any other that can send us letters and share their advice, but we’re not going to let them dictate our committee’s business.”


Manafort Trial Puts Spotlight on Lobbyists

The trial of Paul Manafort, President Donald Trump’s former campaign chairman, is sending shockwaves across the multibillion dollar lobbying industry in Washington. Many lobbyists in Washington fear his guilty verdict on bank and fraud charges and his guilty plea on obstruction charges will make lobbying a much more risky business. Daria Dieguts has the story.


Kavanaugh Moves Step Closer to Confirmation, But With a Hitch

President Donald Trump’s Supreme Court nominee, Brett Kavanaugh, moved a step closer to confirmation Friday when he won a party-line endorsement from the Republican-led Senate Judiciary Committee. But uncertainty was introduced when a Republican senator insisted on a delay in the final Senate vote on Kavanaugh until the FBI can investigate an allegation of sexual assault brought by California professor Christine Blasey Ford. VOA National correspondent Jim Malone has the latest from Washington.


Court: Congress Can Sue Trump Over Foreign Payments

A federal court Friday refused to immediately dismiss a lawsuit accusing President Donald Trump of violating a constitutional anti-corruption provision by accepting foreign payments through his hotels and businesses without the permission of the U.S. Congress.

U.S. District Judge Emmet Sullivan in Washington said in a 58-page ruling that lawmakers who brought the suit had legal standing to sue the president for allegedly flouting the U.S. Constitution’s “emoluments” clause, which prevents federal officeholders from accepting presents and other benefits from foreign governments without the “consent” of Congress.

The lawsuit, filed in June 2017, is the third constitutional challenge to Trump’s business interests while in office, but it is notable because the plaintiffs are themselves members of Congress.

U.S. District Judge Peter Messitte in Greenbelt, Maryland, has allowed a similar lawsuit to move forward, but in December 2017 a judge in Manhattan threw out yet another case, which is now on appeal.

The members of Congress involved in the suit are all Democrats but also include Senator Bernie Sanders, an independent who ran for the Democratic presidential nomination in 2016. They are represented by the Constitutional Accountability Center, a Washington-based liberal legal organization.


Trump Dossier Research Chief Declines U.S. Congress Interview Request

The Republican chairman of the U.S. House Judiciary Committee on Friday subpoenaed a U.S. research firm founder to give a deposition on his hiring of a former British spy to compile a dossier on alleged links between U.S. President Donald Trump’s associates and Russia.

Representative Bob Goodlatte, a Republican from Virginia, announced the move on Twitter a day after receiving a letter in which lawyers for Glenn Simpson, the founder of Fusion GPS, said that their client “will not agree to an interview” requested earlier this week.

“As part of our joint investigation into decisions made by DOJ in 2016, today I subpoenaed Glenn Simpson to appear for a deposition,” Goodlatte posted on Twitter.

Goodlatte said in a separate Twitter post that former FBI Director James Comey, former U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch and other former Justice Department officials have been invited “as witnesses. Will subpoena them if necessary.”

Simpson’s lawyers also sent their letter to House Oversight Chairman Trey Gowdy, who is conducting with Goodlatte a probe into the Justice Department’s decision to investigate possible collusion between Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign and Russia.

The top Democrats on the committees, Elijah Cummings and Jerrold Nadler, in a statement accused the Republicans, who control Congress, of continuing “to abet the president as the walls close in around him.”

Fusion GPS was hired by lawyers for the Democratic Party and Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign to conduct research on Trump, her opponent.

The firm in turn hired Christopher Steele, a former officer of MI6, the British foreign intelligence agency, to produce a dossier that outlined alleged Russian financial dealings with Trump, a longtime real estate developer, and included salacious personal details that remain unconfirmed.

The dossier was sent to the FBI, which already had launched an investigation into whether Russia interfered with the election and whether Trump campaign officials worked with Moscow to try to sway the outcome.

The Kremlin denies meddling in the election. Trump, who denies his campaign colluded with Russia, has called Steele’s work an “unverified and Fake Dirty Dossier” and has repeatedly denied any collusion with Russia.

In their letter, seen by Reuters, Simpson’s lawyers said Simpson already had been interviewed by the House Intelligence Committee, of which Gowdy is a member, and the Senate Judiciary Committee, which like all committees are led by Trump’s fellow Republicans.

“Part and parcel of this concerted effort by the president’s congressional allies has been a campaign of retaliation against the government’s whistleblowers, including our client Mr. Simpson, for their willingness to cooperate with U.S. law enforcement and for their exercise of their constitutional rights to free speech and political activity as American citizens,” the lawyers wrote.

 


Суд дозволив Насірову зняти електронний браслет – САП

Шевченківський районний суд Києва 28 вересня звільнив колишнього голову Державної фіскальної служби Романа Насірова від обов’язку носити електронний браслет, повідомляє у Facebook Спеціалізована антикорупційна прокуратура.

«Питання, яким чином відсутність електронного засобу контролю забезпечуватиме реалізацію політичних, громадських та інших особистих прав та інтересів Насірова Р.М., на яких наголошувала сторона захисту, просячи відмовити у задоволенні клопотання, залишається для сторони обвинувачення відкритим», – зазначили у відомстві.

Натомість суд задовольнив аналогічне клопотання прокурорів САП керівника Департаменту погашення боргу ДФС і продовжив термін носіння браслета Володимирові Новікову (той був підлеглим Насірова).

За даними прокуратури, наступне засідання заплановане на 23 жовтня.

31 січня Кабінет міністрів України звільнив Романа Насірова з посади голови ДФС. До цього, 17 січня, міністр фінансів Олександр Данилюк заявив, що направить подання «з підтвердженням подвійного громадянства (Насірова – ред.), що є порушенням закону про державну службу». За його словами, Велика Британія заявила про наявність у посадовця британського паспорта. Сам Насіров назвав своє звільнення «незаконним і нечесним».

На початку березня 2017 року суд арештував Насірова з можливістю застави в 100 мільйонів гривень, яку внесли його дружина і тесть. Після цього відсторонений голова ДФС вийшов із СІЗО. 15 лютого Насіров попросив Окружний адміністративний суд Києва поновити його на посаді голови Державної фіскальної служби.

За даними слідства, Насіров причетний до так званої «газової схеми Онищенка» і впродовж 2015 року ухвалив низку «безпідставних і незаконних рішень» про розстрочення сум платежів з рентної плати за користування надрами для задіяних у схемі компаній на загальну суму понад мільярд гривень. Слідство вважає, що такими рішеннями державі завдано збитків на суму майже 2 мільярди гривень. Захист Насірова і він сам ці звинувачення заперечують.



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