The White House is not interfering with the FBI’s background investigation into Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, officials said Sunday.
“The White House is not getting involved in the FBI investigation in that way,” Trump adviser Kellyanne Conway said Sunday on CNN’s “State of the Union.” “The president very much respects the independence of the FBI.”
Her point was reiterated by White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders.
“The White House is not micromanaging this process,” Sanders said on “Fox News Sunday.” “The Senate is dictating the terms, they laid out the request. As you’ve heard the president say, do what you need to do, and we’re out of the way and doing exactly that.”
Their comments come after reports, citing unnamed sources, that the White House had instructed the FBI to investigate claims made by two women: Christine Blasey Ford and Deborah Ramirez, but not a third woman, Julie Swetnick, who accused Kavanaugh of sexual misconduct and claimed she was gang-raped at a party that Kavanaugh was present at decades ago.
President Donald Trump told reporters himself Saturday as he left for a rally in West Virginia that FBI agents have “free rein” over the investigation.
“The FBI, as you know, is all over talking to everybody,” he said. “They have free rein. They’re going to do whatever they have to do. Whatever it is they do, they’ll be doing things that we’ve never even thought of.”
The FBI declined to comment.
When the White House announced the probe last week, following a call from Arizona Sen. Jeff Flake, the president said the investigation “must be limited in scope.”
Conway pointed to that on Sunday, saying the probe was “not meant to be a fishing expedition.”
Still, she emphasized that it was up to the FBI to determine what the “limited scope” meant.
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Source: USA Today