sexual assault

Lawmakers Reach Deal to Tackle Sexual Harassment on Capitol Hill
New agreement would end heavily criticized ‘cooling off’ period

The U.S. Capitol Christmas Tree is displayed on the West Front of the Capitol on Monday. The noble fir was harvested on Nov. 2 from Willamette National Forest in Oregon. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Congress will act quickly on compromise legislation to overhaul how sexual harassment is handled on Capitol Hill. The new proposal, released Wednesday, has the backing of leadership in both chambers and parties.

Negotiations to reconcile the separate House and Senate proposals that passed easily early this year have dragged on for months. But swift action is expected in the Senate this week and the House the following week.

Tennessee Senate Candidates' Debate Finale 
 

Watch: Highlights of Susan Collins' Speech Confirming Vote for Kavanaugh
 

GOP Sen. Susan Collins of Maine expressed frustration with the confirmation process for Supreme Court nominees in recent decades in a lengthy floor speech on Friday, highlighting the drama surrounding Judge Brett Kavanaugh, including the allegations of sexual assault brought against the nominee. Collins said she cannot fairly vote against Kavanaugh because the claims against him do not meet a “more likely than not” standard.

Anti-Kavanaugh Protesters Stir Up Ruckus Outside McConnell's Office 
 

Threats Against Jeff Flake and Chuck Grassley Prompt Additional Security
Move comes amid contentious debate over Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh

Sen. Jeff Flake is under additional security in response to threats against him. (Photo By Sarah Silbiger/CQ Roll Call)

At least two key Republican senators who found themselves in the center of a firestorm last week over Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination to the Supreme Court have been assigned special protection due to threats as well as crowd control issues. 

Multiple Capitol Police officers confirmed Friday that teams of uniformed officers were moving with Sens. Jeff Flake and Charles E. Grassley. The latter chairs the Judiciary Committee, which heard testimony Thursday from Kavanaugh and Christine Blasey Ford, who has accused the nominee of sexual assault decades ago when both were in high school. Flake, a Judiciary member, helped broker a deal to delay a floor vote on Kavanaugh to allow for an FBI investigation into allegations against him by Ford and others. 

Location, Location, Location: Hearing With Kavanaugh's Accuser Could be in Tight Quarters (For Now)

Thursday's blockbuster hearing featuring Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh and his accuser is scheduled to be in a tiny room, but that could change. (Sarah Silbiger/CQ Roll Call)

Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh and his accuser Christine Blasey Ford are expected to testify Thursday in a tiny room before the Senate Judiciary Committee.  If the hearing is held in the small room as scheduled, there won't be much room for the public — including protesters — or reporters to watch the proceedings. But that could change. 

The Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on tap for Thursday is set to be in Dirksen 226, a small room that can accommodate lawmakers, a few staffers and a witness, but not much beyond that. The highly anticipated meeting is sure to draw enormous media attention and throngs of protesters.

56 Arrested Demonstrating Support for Christine Blasey Ford
Protesters rally against nomination of Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh

Capitol Police arrested 56 protesters who were demonstrating support for Christine Blasey Ford.(Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Capitol Police arrested 56 protesters Thursday who flooded Senate office buildings  to voice opposition to Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh and express support for his accuser, Christine Blasey Ford.

Thirty-three protesters were arrested outside of Senate Judiciary Chairman Charles E. Grassley’s office in the Hart Building on Thursday afternoon. The demonstrators were charged with “crowding, obstructing, or incommoding.” Earlier in the day, Capitol Police arrested 23 protesters outside the Dirksen Building office of Tennessee Republican Sen. Bob Corker for “unlawful demonstration activities.” They faced the same charges.

Minnesota 5th District Candidates Sidestep Ellison Allegations
Democratic primary in the state is Tuesday

Rep. Keith Ellison, D-Minn., who is running for state attorney general, has been accused of abuse by a former girlfriend. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Three top Democrats running to succeed Rep. Keith Ellison in Minnesota’s 5th District responded cautiously Monday to allegations that he abused a former girlfriend in 2016.

The candidates did not say whether they believed the allegations against the six-term Democratic lawmaker, who has denied that the long-term relationship included physical abuse. They also did not call for him to resign or drop out of his current race for state attorney general.