A freshman Democrat selected to serve on the House Judiciary Committee has told his constituents the panel will “likely” investigate claims accusing Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh of perjury during his controversial confirmation hearings last year.
Joe Neguse, a Colorado Democrat elected in 2018 to serve the state’s second congressional district, told supporters on Friday the committee could move to impeach the newly-appointed justice if their findings prove he knowingly lied to lawmakers during his confirmation process.
Donald Trump’s second pick to serve a lifelong appointment on the Supreme Court was alleged to have provided misleading statements surrounding sexual assault accusations levelled against him by Deborah Ramirez, a former Yale classmate.
“There’s no question [Kavanaugh] committed perjury during the confirmation hearings and so forth,” Mr Neguse said on Friday. “I think the Judiciary Committee is likely to take that up.”
The video was first shared by a conservative group before being reported by the National Review.
Clear discrepancies were revealed in Mr Kavanaugh’s story about when he first learned of the sexual assault allegations brought against him, though it remains unclear whether his intent was to mislead lawmakers about his knowledge of the accusations.
He first said during his testimony that he had only learned of Ms Ramirez’s allegations after they were published in an explosive New Yorker story.
However, NBC News then published a report after obtaining text messages he sent apparently discussing the accusations before they were revealed by the New Yorker.
The reason it remains unclear whether Mr Kavanaugh was purposefully misleading lawmakers on the issue is because he had previously informed investigators in the US Senate that he was aware Ms Ramirez was seeking to substantiate her claims by reaching out to their former classmates and fellow alumni.
However, Ms Ramirez’s accusations aren’t the only issue Mr Kavanaugh was accused of providing misleading statements on. The justice was criticised for providing inaccurate definitions to slang terms included in his yearbook that may have cast the Republican judge in a negative light. He was also alleged not to have provided accurate details about his tenure serving in former President George HW Bush’s White House.
Mr Kavanaugh has defended the answers he provided throughout his confirmation hearings as truthful and accurate to the best of his recollection.
Mr Neguse is not the only Democrat on the panel to have openly discussed the possibility of impeaching Mr Kavanaugh.
During an Acela train ride from New York City to Washington, Jerrold Nadler, a New York Democrat, was reportedly overheard by a journalist discussing what could happen if the latest Supreme Court justice was impeached.
“The worst-case scenario — or best case depending on your point of view — you prove he committed perjury, about a terrible subject and the Judicial Conference recommends you impeach him,” Mr Nadler said. “So the president appoints someone just as bad.”