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Braun, Donnelly respond to Kavanaugh allegations

Senate candidate Mike Braun was in Lafayette Tuesday at SIA and addressed allegations against Judge Brett Kavanaugh. Braun has publicly supported the Supreme Court nominee.

Posted: Sep 25, 2018 4:54 PM
Updated: Sep 25, 2018 7:47 PM

LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) — Indiana's two senate candidates are weighing in on accusations of sexual misconduct against Judge Brett Kavanaugh. Republican Mike Braun is not wavering in his support of Kavanaugh, while Democrat Joe Donnelly said the FBI should investigate the claims. 

Braun was in Lafayette at the Subaru of Indiana Automotive plant Tuesday morning.

"Amazing facility in there," said Braun after exiting the production line. "The safety, the cleanliness, the low decibel level is all impressive. I heard they pay a $26 wage with great benefits. We are lucky to have a facility like this in Lafayette and lucky to have it in Indiana. "

Braun spoke of his time inside the plant but also answered questions on allegations of sexual misconduct against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh; a man he supports.

"What happens in politics in general, it gets so caustic so quickly," said Braun. "There are two sides to every issue. I'm glad the process looks like it is going to be done fairly."

Kavanaugh denies the allegations. Christine Blasey Ford accuses him of misconduct when he was 17. Deborah Ramirez, the most recent woman to accuse him, said the alleged misconduct happened during their time at Yale.

Braun replied "yes" when News 18 asked him if he believed Ms. Ramirez and Dr. Ford should be heard in this case. 

"They're going to be vetted," said Braun. "I'm happy with the process and I'm glad both sides are going to be heard. He (Kavanaugh) is the kind of guy who embodies the principles of a judge where you want to base it on interpreting the constitution, not legislating from the bench."

Braun's opponent, incumbent Senator Joe Donnelly released the following to News 18 about the second woman accusing Kavanaugh of sexual misconduct:

"The allegations raised by Dr. Ford and Ms. Ramirez against Judge Kavanaugh are serious, merit further review, and I believe should be investigated by the FBI. I will continue to get as much information as I can, including by following Thursday's scheduled hearing." - Sen. Donnelly.

Donnelly had previously called for a senate judiciary committee confirmation hearing to be delayed after the first allegation. The committee will now hear from Kavanaugh and Ford Thursday. 

"I think Hoosiers and many people who want to see solutions, whether it comes to getting a good judge or a good senator, you know think the process has gotten a little crazy," said Braun.

News 18 also asked Braun and Donnelly about President Trump's meeting with Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein. Reports came out Monday morning about Rosenstein's possible depature from the White House. This comes as recent news stories discuss negative comments Rosenstein is reported to have made last year about the president, according to White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders. The deputy attorney general was reported as having discussed possibly secretly recording the president and invoking the Constitution to have the Cabinet remove him from office

"I think, again, this is something that has gotten a lot of press," said Braun. "I think he is part of the Trump team. If there was anything to the fact that he did, it's probably not someone who should be on the Trump team. On the other hand, I hope that is vetted well, so if that is not the case, we know that as well."

A media relations coordinator released the following to News 18 regarding Donnelly's stance on Rosenstein:

"Donnelly believes Special Counsel Mueller should be able to follow the facts wherever they lead, and that our country is built on a commitment to the rule of law, where law enforcement can independently conduct investigations."

The two candidates will debate live Monday, Oct. 8 at Purdue Calumet. News 18 plans to cover it.

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