Grassley Taps Sex-Crimes Prosecutor to Question Ford, Kavanaugh

Sen. Charles Grassley (R-Iowa), chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, said late Tuesday (Sept. 25) that he has tapped Rachel Mitchell. a prosecutor on leave from the Maricopa County (Phoenix) attorney's office, to question Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh and Christine Blasey Ford, who has accused him of sexual assault.

Mitchell has been a prosecutor since 1983, and for a dozen years ran the bureau responsible for sex-related felonies. She will serve as nomination investigative counsel for the committee majority members.

There had been concerns about the optics of the all-male Republican majority doing the questioning.

"The majority members have followed the bipartisan recommendation to hire as staff counsel for the committee an experienced career sex-crimes prosecutor to question the witnesses at Thursday’s hearing," said Grassley. "The goal is to de-politicize the process and get to the truth, instead of grandstanding and giving senators an opportunity to launch their presidential campaigns."

The hearing, a continuation of the nomination hearings Judiciary is responsible for, is scheduled for Thursday (Sept. 27) with a tentative vote on Kavanaugh's nomination the following day.

John Eggerton

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.