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Editorial: One week delay for FBI investigation was good move

Judge Brett Kavanaugh

After a full day of questioning and testimony at the Senate Judiciary Committee hearing Thursday and a night of reflection, calmer heads prevailed Friday as the Senate agreed to a one-week delay on the Brett Kavanaugh nomination for further investigation of allegations against the Supreme Court justice nominee.

Developments continued at a fast pace Friday as history unrolled before our eyes Friday.

  • The Senate Judiciary Committee approved a favorable referral of Kavanaugh’s nomination to the full Senate.

  • Sen. Jeff Flake, R-Arizona, called for an additional FBI background check of Kavanaugh.

  • A joint agreement by Senate leaders brought a one-week delay to allow for an FBI investigation.

  • The Judiciary Committee officially requested an additional FBI investigation of Kavanaugh


  • President Trump late Friday ordered an FBI investigation of Kavanaugh’s background.

This one-week delay was a positive development for the country, the Senate, Kavanaugh and his accusers.

Sen. Flake told the Judiciary Committee that he would oppose Kavanaugh on the floor of the Senate unless his demands were met for a one-week delay and an FBI investigation of the allegations.

Kavanaugh released a statement Friday stating he would “continue to cooperate” with the FBI.

The attorney for Christine Blasey Ford welcomed the development of a new investigation.

Sen.  Flake’s contention that the Kavanaugh nomination process is tearing the “country apart” was correct.

Ford’s powerful testimony on Thursday struck a chord with many who watched the televised Senate hearing. Even President Trump Friday said Friday she was a “very credible witness.”

Kavanaugh’s testimony Thursday - angry at times - also struck a chord with his supporters across the country. His testimony was called “powerful, honest and riveting” by President Trump Thursday.

Then the American Bar Association issued a call late Thursday for a Senate pause on the nomination for an additional FBI probe into the allegations. The legal association had earlier endorsed Kavanaugh’s nomination.

Flake believed that not completing further investigation would signal that the allegations were not being taken seriously and investigated by the Senate. He also contended Judge Kavanaugh and his family were distraught by accusations they believed were not credible.

“We ought to do what we can to make sure that we do all due diligence with a nomination this important,” Flake said.

How true.

Not completing another investigation could severely damage the Senate’s integrity.

Making a quick decision upon the Kavanaugh nomination could damage the trust of the American people in the Supreme Court.

The Senate’s one-week delay was the best move for America and all involved.

This editorial is the opinion of the West Central Tribune’s Editorial Board of publisher Steve Ammermann and editor Kelly Boldan.