How it looks: Optics key in fight over Kavanaugh hearing

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A key US Senate committee has postponed its high-stakes hearing on sexual assault allegation against President Donald Trump's Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh after his accuser Christine Blasey Ford declined the committee's request to testify before it.

Among these demands were a Thursday or later hearing date and a prohibition on the Senate Judiciary Committee enlisting female outside lawyers to assist them in taking Ford's testimony.

"She has been receiving death threats, which have been reported to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and she and her family have been forced out of their home", Ford's lawyers said in a letter published by U.S. media.

Allegations from a university professor, Christine Blasey Ford, emerged in the United States media last week.

Other requests include Ford and Kavanaugh never being in the same room and Kavanaugh testifying first.

Ford's lead attorney, Democratic donor Deborah Katz, sent Judiciary Committee staff an email shortly after 9:00 p.m. refusing to give an answer.

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There are widespread road closures due to flooding on primary and secondary routes throughout the Pee Dee, according to the SCDOT. South Carolina's Department of Transportation ( SCDOT ) ordered Interstate 95 in Florence County closed at around 6:00 p.m.

During a speech to conservative activists at the Values Voters Summit in Washington on Friday, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell appeared determined to stay the course.

So it was unusual when, at first, the president showed restraint towards Kavanaugh's accuser.

"President Trump has nominated a stunningly successful individual". "She has already been forced out of her home and continues to be subjected to harassment, hate mail, and death threats".

Republicans felt they were starting to gain momentum in the public relations battle over the handling of a sexual assault allegation against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh.

There was no immediate public response from Ford's lawyers.

But onFriday, he changed tone, tweeting, "I have no doubt that, if the attack on Dr Ford was as bad as she says, charges would have been immediately filed with local Law Enforcement Authorities by either her or her loving parents". Grassley said in a statement evening.

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Kavanaugh came to the White House amid the upheaval, but there was no immediate word on why or whether he had been summoned. At the White House, Trump said he's open to a delay in order to keep the process going and eventually confirm Kavanaugh.

Kavanaugh has "categorically" denied Ford's allegation, claiming he was not at the party described. He's also defended prominent men accused of sexual misbehaviour, including former Fox News Chairman Roger Ailes and Roy Moore, the Alabama GOP Senate candidate who was defeated after allegations of seeking relationships with underage women.

She told the newspaper that she discussed the alleged assault in 2012 when she attended couples therapy with her husband.

"On top of that, haggling over a single day that this credible victim of sexual assault says she needs to arrange for her security is preposterous. But what we need to find out here is - we don't know enough yet so I can't reach that conclusion" she said of the question of Kavanaugh in particular. Nevada Sen. Dean Heller, who is facing a hard re-election race, told supporters in a conference call that the accusations were a "hiccup" and Kavanaugh would be confirmed, according to the Nevada Independent.

The president's previous restraint this week, even as he repeatedly defended Kavanaugh and criticized Democrats, surprised many Republicans determined to salvage the nomination.

Lisa Murkowski, whose support in the 51-49 GOP-run Senate would likely be pivotal. We believe this will allow for informed questioning, will generate the most insightful testimony, and will help de-politicize the hearing. Since the 2016 election campaign, Trump has been fending off allegations over his own behavior - including a recording from years ago saying that, being famous, he could grope women with impunity - and lawsuits.

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Asked about the move, Mr Unsworth said it was a " PR stunt " and the tube "had absolutely no chance of working". Musk resides in California and his two companies, SpaceX and Tesla are headquartered in the state.

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