CNN's Rick Santorum: Christine Blasey Ford came forward with her report of sexual assault to "influence the political process"

CNN's Rick Santorum: Christine Blasey Ford came forward with her report of sexual assault to "influence the political process" 

Santorum: "You don't come forward unless you're doing so because you want to influence this process"

Video ››› ››› MEDIA MATTERS STAFF

From the September 21 edition of CNN's New Day:

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RICK SANTORUM (CNN SENIOR POLITICAL COMMENTATOR): Well, I -- look, I think there's a lot of frustration out there about how this was all handled. And not just that this comes out, but that it's come out the way [Sen.] Dianne Feinstein and the Democrats have handled this, is that it comes out at the last possible minute, in a way that was clearly pointed to try to tank this nomination -- this was not properly vetted, this was not properly investigated. They could have done a much better job had they looked at this in a serious light, which would have been a serious light had the committee been given this and this been reviewed, and even potentially have the FBI take a look at it, but none of that was done. And so when you look at how it was handled and the complicity potentially of Ms. Blasey Ford, there is -- 

JOHN BERMAN (CO-HOST): Complicity? Sorry, sorry, complicity? 

SANTORUM: Well, the way that is being handled since and asking for delays and not necessarily coming forward --

BERMAN: She went to -- she first raised this when he was a candidate, not even the nominee. She first went to The Washington Post and her member of Congress before he was the nominee and said, "Hey, there's this person's name out there" -- she says he sexually assaulted her 36 years ago. Again, he says it didn't happen, but she says that. She did that back in July, she told her therapist years ago that this happened --

SANTORUM: Well -- it's clear that she went --

BERMAN: I'm not sure what her complicity is, when once her name leaked she said, "Yes, this happened." Complicity in what? 

SANTORUM: It's clear you don't -- yeah, you don't share this unless you're trying to influence the political process. I mean that -- you don't come forward unless you're doing so because you want to influence this process. So -- now how she did it and her wanting to remain [anonymous], all of those things are judgment calls that she made, but she's not -- I mean she obviously came forward because she wanted to have an impact on this process. Let's be clear about that. 

BERMAN: Well, she told the story anonymously earlier because she wanted those Senators to know. She came forward publicly because she was getting calls to her house --

SANTORUM: I understand that. 

BERMAN: -- and they were coming by her door, and her life was being turned upside down and she wanted to take that on directly. 

SANTORUM: Understood.

BERMAN: And again, you agree, I just want to be clear here, that if you are a victim of sexual assault, which she says that she is, you have a right to come forward and tell your story. 

SANTORUM: You have a right to come forward and tell your story and you also have an obligation, if you're accusing somebody of something, to come forward and tell your story, not to hang back and try to influence it anonymously. And so -- look, I think this is a 36-year-old story that is going to be very, very difficult to find out what happened and what didn't happen. And to come forward and do so in an anonymous fashion, to me, I have serious questions about whether that's the proper way to handle something like this of a serious nature. 

BERMAN: OK, understood. You do know often sexual assault victims are scared for their safety and that's why they don't come forward publicly, they're embarrassed about it, there's again myriad reasons why they don't -- 

SANTORUM: I understand that, but it's also -- you have to be fair to -- understood. But you have to be fair to the person who's being accused, too. I mean -- because otherwise anybody can come forward and make these accusations, and that's just not -- it's not fair to the people who have actually been sexually assaulted to do it in a way that undermines the credibility of these accusations. 

Previously

Jeanine Pirro: Christine Blasey Ford may have been hypnotized by her therapist

While discussing Kavanaugh, Fox host warns that "false accusations" of sexual assault are a bigger threat than terrorism

Right-wing fever swamps are now smearing Christine Blasey Ford over her high school yearbooks

Posted In
Gender, Nominations & Appointments, The Judiciary, Sexual Harassment & Sexual Assault
Network/Outlet
CNN
Person
Rick Santorum
Show/Publication
New Day
Stories/Interests
Supreme Court Nominations, Sexual assault
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