Sen. Chuck Grassley referred Michael Avenatti & Julie Swetnick to the DOJ

Kavanaugh Confirmation Vote

At this point, if I think back to Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation battle, I just get really sad and hopeless. The Republican minority in this country rolled the majority. They put a sexual assailant on the court and they did it while making a mockery of the Senate Judiciary Committee and by disrespecting and maligning victims around the country. But just take a moment and think back to those heated and awful weeks: the Senate Judiciary and the FBI flat-out refused to speak to Michael Avenatti and his client Julie Swetnick. Swetnick gave a sworn statement about witnessing Kavanaugh at parties in high school, and how he and his buddies used to get girls drunk so they could sexually assault or rape them.

Swetnick’s sworn statement was all we had – she was not asked to give testimony before the committee, nor was the FBI’s investigation extended to include her claims. But since she’s a woman, I guess that means she’s a liar, at least according to Republican Senator Chuck Grassley, who spent most of the Ford hearing apologizing to Brett Kavanaugh for daring to even listen to one of his victims. Grassley has referred Julie Swetnick and Michael Avenatti to the DOJ for a possible criminal investigation:

Senate Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley on Thursday referred Julie Swetnick, one of the women who brought accusations of sexual misconduct against Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanagh, and her attorney, Michael Avenatti, to the Department of Justice. Grassley is seeking a possible criminal investigation into whether the two provided a false statement under oath to the committee and whether they tried to obstruct a congressional investigation. The letter, sent to FBI Director Christopher Wray and Attorney General Jeff Sessions, stated that Avenatti and Swetnick should be investigated for “materially false statements they made to the Committee during the course of the Committee’s investigation.”

Before Kavanaugh’s confirmation, Avenatti provided the committee with a sworn statement in September from Swetnick that detailed her allegations. She alleged that Kavanaugh, along with his friend Mark Judge, would drink “excessively” at high school parties in the 1980s and become “abusive and physically aggressive” toward girls. Swetnick also alleged the two men were involved in efforts at parties to get girls drunk so that they would “lose their inhibitions and ability to say no.” Kavanaugh, along with Judge, have denied these accusations, along with other sexual misconduct and assault accusations made against him.

In a text message to Newsweek, Avenatti said that Grassley, who is the leading Republican on the committee, had “just made a major mistake….Let the investigation into Kavanaugh and his lies begin,” Avenatti added. Avenatti also said on Twitter that it was “ironic” that Grassley wanted an investigation into his and Swetnick’s possible false statement, rather than investigating the original claims.

[From Newsweek]

I feel like I’m smoking crack here… was there ever any evidence or statement presented to the committee that Swetnick was lying in her sworn statement, other than Kavanaugh’s flat denial? When someone accused of sexual assault says “I didn’t do it,” that is not enough to open up a criminal investigation into his accuser for “making false statements.” For the love of God. But, as Avenatti did point out, if the DOJ really does open an investigation, that means the FBI will finally have to interview Brett Kavanaugh, huh?

Meanwhile, Avenatti is still making narcissistic noise about running for president. Time Magazine did an in-depth profile – a profile worthy of a potential presidential candidate, complete with gory details about his failed marriages and tax problems – and Avenatti agreed to be interviewed. He f–ked himself over right here:

A run for President would thrust Avenatti into the middle of the [Democratic] party’s identity crisis. The Democrats have not been this powerless since the 1920s, and their members have responded by nominating a historic number of women and people of color for office. But when it comes to the party’s presidential nominee in 2020, Avenatti thinks in different terms. “I think it better be a white male,” he says. He hastens to add that he wishes it weren’t so, but it’s undeniable that people listen to white men more than they do others; it’s why he’s been successful representing Daniels and immigrant mothers, he says. “When you have a white male making the arguments, they carry more weight,” he says. “Should they carry more weight? Absolutely not. But do they? Yes.”

[From Time]

Nope. I already stopped following him on Twitter, but maybe I should cancel him altogether? Should we take a vote on that? Do we need to cancel Avenatti, Y/N?

2018 White House Correspondents Dinner Arrivals

Photos courtesy of Avalon Red.

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45 Responses to “Sen. Chuck Grassley referred Michael Avenatti & Julie Swetnick to the DOJ”

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  1. Renee says:

    NBC news has done an investigation and could not corroborate Swetnick claims. They talked to her witnesses and they changed their statements to NBC and said it wasn’t true. Chuck Todd tweeted about it last night that Avenetti & Swetnick’s claims were misleading.

    I am NOT stating none of it was true. I’m just saying NBC news has now investigated the claims (since they put Swetnick on the air during the hearings) and now say the witnesses do not corroborate her story.

    I feel like Avenetti uses these women’s stories to further his own agenda. I think he did not serve Stormy Daniels well and he has done a disservice to Swetnick as well.

    • Juls says:

      There is a simple solution. The FBI could give Swetnik and Kavanaugh both a polygraph. I know it’s not foolproof or even admissible in Court, but it could give the public an idea of who’s lying and who’s not. It does have some legal sway, insofar as sex offenders are required to take polygraphs and they can go back to prison if they fail, so it’s not a totally bunk method. Let the GOP try to explain it if Kavanaugh fails and Swetnick passes.

    • Catfoodjunkie says:

      Avenatti is a piece of work and one shady mother fella. Fraud on just. So. Many. Levels. Tax liens and lawsuits and judgements ordered which remain unpaid. He’s a liar at a Kavanope level.

  2. Jay says:

    I’m a nonBlack WOC and my first take is that he’s right. Is this just a product of racist social conditioning? Political hopelessness? I’m honestly asking. If anyone can snap me out of it I’d appreciate it LOL. :/

    • jan90067 says:

      Sadly, while we don’t want or like to hear this, in our (most) cultures, this is still true, even in the 21st century. While I don’t think he’s the Great Hope for the Dem. party, I think that Ds really NEED to get their shizz together at this point, and start providing a real front runner that people can get behind. They need to become PROactive instead of just REactive.

    • Kitten says:

      I have so many issues with Avenatti–but he’s not wrong on this. It’s just that as a white man, he’s the worst messenger on this topic.

      But yeah, I said after HRC lost that I really don’t want to see another woman run for POTUS. I’ve since changed my mind but when things were still raw, I just couldn’t imagine watching another woman deal with the amount of grief (some fair, but a LOT unfair) that Hillary went through.

      People DO listen to white men more than any other segment of our population. It’s absolutely f*cked up, but denying it isn’t helpful. We need to acknowledge the inequity and continue to fight against it.

      • Darla says:

        And yet, Barack Obama won two Presidential elections.

        Trump rode the backlash, but I just cannot comply with the idea that I need a white man to save me. That the deplorables won my country.

        Come on ladies! Remember the famous and best ever Batman scene? Michelle Pfieffer is Catwoman and she says “you make it so easy don’t you? just waiting for some Batman to come along and save you”

        I am putting my money down on Kamala. Or Klobuchar.

      • AnneC says:

        What Darla said. President Obama won twice and HRC got 3 million more votes than trump. We absolutely need a women president ASAP and I will only volunteer and work for women running for that office at this point. I’m all in for Harris if she decides to run. White men are a dwindling demographic (whites will be a minority by 2040) and we need many more female elected leaders. Medical and law schools are now 50-50 male/female and I’d like to see that reflected in all professions across the country.

      • Who ARE These People? says:

        Hillary Clinton won the popular vote and Donald Trump won only by virtue of cheating and electoral interference. Always remember that. Hillary won her primary race by large numbers (not only super delegates; not getting into that fruitless discussion) and Hillary won the popular vote by a significant margin. People will vote for women. People have voted for women. I support women running for office as Democrats. What we need is turnout of Democratic voters, and to fight back against rigged elections and voter suppression. It’s not about having white men running. They stole the election from one of the whitest men out there, Al Gore. And they did a number on another very white man, John Kerry.

        It’s not about the candidate, it’s about the process.

        Avenatti has a place in law, if he doesn’t get himself disbarred. He has a massive ego and over-weaning ambition. We can thank him for his role in bringing down Michael Cohen, and for speaking truth to power, but when he says people will only vote for a white man, he means only one specific white man — Michael Avenatti.

      • Jessica says:

        I do think it’s more difficult for a woman than anyone else. But Hillary despite being supremely qualified just doesn’t have a lot of charisma or warmth in those type of debates and sadly as a woman the sexist expectation of being “likeable” is different . Obama was exceptionally talented at communicating you really can’t compare him to almost anyone in the current political landscape. But I think it’s ridiculous to go in with the idea that a woman can’t win. A woman will win and it could happen in 2020. It just has to be the right woman just as the first black president had to be the “right” ( read exceptional) man.

        I will say that I think the “ younger” Democratic women, such as Kamala, klobuchar and gillibrand are better equipped in terms of communication skills than Hillary and her generation. And I think it will be someone of that generation or younger that breaks the glass ceiling as opposed to Warren for instance.

    • savu says:

      Right?! If he didn’t assert that it should be a white guy… he’d still be right about how our society sees women and people of color (and WoC). Maybe the right way to go about it would be to say something like “I’d rather see a woman or person of color raised to the office” or something? Idk. Add in his famewhore-y-ness, and that’s where it feels like a gross thing to use to promote himself.

    • Lama Bean says:

      I’m a black woman and I said the same thing as Avenatti last year. Abrams, Gillum, and Beto have made me rethink that. They are unapologetic liberals and it has Democrats fired up. Dems have problems with turnout. A lot of people feel like Democrats tend to pull back on their liberal outlook when they get misquoted by the media and demonized as socialists by Republicans. (Note I am a staunch Hillary and Obama Democrat.)

    • jay says:

      He’s right in theory…but very wrong in practice. His whole fight has been against misogyny and white male privilege. To turn around and invoke that very same privilege as a selling feature of your candidacy is such a goddamn disappointment. If white male voices dominate and he acknowledges that as fact, what’s stopping him from passing the mic to a POC or a woman? *sounds of me cutting up his ally membership card*

  3. Millenial says:

    I think whether he means to be or not, he’s acts like a side show and comes off as a narcissist. I think ultimately he harmed the cause. I believe Julie Swetnick, but I wish she had approached a different lawyer.

  4. Tw says:

    He’s not cancelled for me. He’s been right again and again. The republicans squashed the Swetnick story for a reason.

  5. K-Peace says:

    The way i see it is, Avenatti is right. We all talk about it every day, how white males are listened to more than any other people. And he says that he wishes that that wasn’t the way it is. So why should we cancel him? I just don’t see what he said, as being bad.

    • Becks1 says:

      What he said is so bad because its true. White men are taken more seriously in this country than any one else. We don’t like to hear that stated so plainly, and it shouldn’t be that way, but it is.

    • Who ARE These People? says:

      He’s right that they’ve been listened to but he’s self-serving in predicting that’s the way it’s going to stay. This business of women in power is the can that keeps getting kicked down the road.

    • jay says:

      If he’s acknowledging that white male voices dominate, maybe he could use his 15 minutes to pass the mic to a person of colour or a woman? It’s one thing to acknowledge…it’s another to perpetuate. He could have been a great running mate…if he hadn’t done the very thing he’s allegedly fighting against.

  6. OriginalLala says:

    I mean he is a narcissistic showman, but it’s sadly true that the world listens to white men more than anyone else. If we had any doubts, the Kavanaugh experience clearly proved this is still true.

    • jwoolman says:

      People in other countries have been electing female leaders for a very long time. In a fair election not plagued by disinformation campaigns funded by a foreign power, a media mesmerized by shiny Trump baubles, an electoral college system that weights votes from sparsely populated areas two or three times more than from dense urban areas thanks to old population figures used, and very likely machines shifting votes from Hillary to Trump – we would have a woman as President right now. Hillary came close to outrunning the hackers regardless, just as Obama had done twice.

  7. Darla says:

    Yes. I cancelled him. Shame, I used to admire the way he shook trump, and thought he was good lawyer. But now i feel he’s a lot more like trump than he is unlike trump.

  8. Becks1 says:

    I think Avenatti needs to stay in his lane. I think he is useful in some ways, he certainly gets under Trump’s skin, but I think he needs to stop thinking of himself as the “only person who can out Trump Trump” or “the only one who can beat him in 2020″ or whatever else he thinks of himself. He needs to stop trying to be an immigration lawyer, a human rights lawyer, a womens rights lawyer, etc. He needs to just…stay in his lane.

    • Darla says:

      Yes, perfectly stated. I agree with this. But he’s not going to stay in his lane, so I just don’t have any interest in him anymore.

  9. Louisa says:

    Avenatti was completely done for me the minute he started talking about a presidential run. I thought he was fine at first as Stormy’s lawyer, then when you couldn’t turn on a cable news show without his mug on it, and I realized he was in this for himself. It stopped being about Stormy’s case and became the Avenatti Show. I even stopped watching Lawrence O’Donnell (who I love) for a while as he kept having him on.
    So yeah. Canceled.
    And as for only a white man should run. Remember a woman did just win. #3millionvotesmore

  10. Lightpurple says:

    The people of Iowa need to wake up and get rid of Grassley. He made a total mockery of the judiciary committee when he refused to have a hearing on the Garland nomination. His behavior throughout the Kavanaugh proceedings was disgraceful; misogynistic to the core. He knew Kavanaugh had a bad his from the start but tried to hide it and treated Diane Feinstein like dirt. He showed no respect to Dr Ford and then insulted the women of his own party by saying the work of the judiciary committee was too hard for them. He’s now using our tax dollars, in an abuse of power, to harass Swetnick. He needs to go.

    • Who ARE These People? says:

      The people of Iowa have kept him in office for 3,000 years … they seem to be okay with him and his horrible ways.

  11. Mabs A'Mabbin says:

    Maybe he could have a woman or a poc, or woc, run with him and secretly promise to fake his death once behind the desk. The crazy side deserves some crazy.

  12. KidV says:

    I still follow him on Twitter, but I was never on the “Avenetti for President” train. I’ll be voting Democrat so if he’s the last person standing then obviously I’ll vote for him, I just hope it doesn’t come down to that.

    I am on the Kamala Harris train. I’ve always voted for her and will continue to do so.

    • Who ARE These People? says:

      He’s not going to run or be allowed to run for president. I HOPE. (Trump has taught us to never say never…)

  13. Lama Bean says:

    I don’t expect this to go anywhere. Grassley is just trying to hobble any 2020 potential trump opponents. This just tells me he and the Republican Party see Avenatti as a threat. Funny thing is few Democrats do. But let’s let them expend energy on someone who is inconsequential.

    Note there are anonymous allegations floating around of Cory Booker sexually assaulting someone as well. Attempt to neuter Booker ahead of 2020.

    • Louisa says:

      I hadn’t heard anything about these Booker allegations. I really hope not.

      Speaking of Booker – another bomb found addressed to him.

  14. PeggingOut says:

    For the last 3 months I’ve been saying how much Avenatti actually reminds me of Trump. Arrogant, entitled, outrageous, pompous etc etc etc. narcissistic behind the meaning of the word,

    And they both screwed Stormy.

    Yep. Cancelled.

  15. adastraperaspera says:

    Chuck Grassley never should have been promoted past tossing hay bales on a trailer. He is an outrageous poser. Very likely a model for members of the small town mob in Shirley Jackson’s story “The Lottery.”

  16. Maylee says:

    I think we’re inclined to agree with him out of fear. Legitimate fear of losing the midterms, 2020, and continuing the trauma of the past two years. We will do ANYTHING to save the country, even if it means admitting that a white male is the best chance (right now) of turning this thing around. So why not use the white man image to get back control, to stop the anti-woman/poc/LGBTQI/Islamophobic legislation, and most importantly to stop the judicial appointments. Then use any majority we gain by that white man image to undo as much of the past 2-4 years as possible and appoint diverse judges. And no more playing that nice bipartisan BS. We need to do what needs to be done (right now) to save this country; the white man can be used as a stepping stone towards electing a woman or minority for pres. I think that’s what we’re all thinking when we agree with MA here.

    • Who ARE These People? says:

      Again, the women in power thing keeps getting kicked down the road for one reason or another.

      In any case, it’s less than 2 weeks until the most critical election of most of our lifetimes. If the Democrats don’t at least take back the House, there will be no reason to keep speculating about future presidential runs.

      Obama, a black man, got a lot of socially progressive things done. Hillary Clinton would have done more. It’s not really about having a white man. I tend to think it’s more about not having a black person in office, that was the most offensive thing of all to racist Americans, which are a very big group and exist as well on the left.

      • Maylee says:

        Yeah, it fills me with sadness and rage to say that a white man should run, like we need the white man to save the country, ugh. I feel sick at any allusion to that. It’s more like settling for that now to get what we really want and need later. Maybe definitely it’s just two years of building desperation, hopelessness and lack of faith in fellow Americans that is causing this type of thinking. Fear that racists and misogynists will continue to win.

        Unfortunately, the last election showed us too many people in this country are not ready for a woman president. If we elect an incompetent embarrassment of a man over an educated and experienced woman, that shows we’re not ready. The numbers shouldn’t have been that close.

        So do we roll the dice again, put faith in fellow americans to do the right thing? What if 4 years turns into 8? I don’t think we’d recover from 8 years. So maybe the thinking is kick us down the road for now because the alternative is there is no country to be president of.

  17. natalie says:

    Someone I follow on Instagram made a series of posts against “cancelling” on the internet, and it stuck with me. This is a Latina who grew up super poor living in NYC but has moved into an educated “cool” “woke” social circle and struggles with some of the liberal ideology oftentimes coming from, tbh, privileged white kids.

    She said:

    “Cancelling someone is taking someone’s humanity away from them and claiming they aren’t capable of growing.”

    “Cancelling is what we do to write over the fact that we weren’t born woke.”

    “To cancel someone is to assume that based on one thing a person did or said they are some kinda way so u ruin their life. To cancel someone is to attempt to isolate them.”

    She also described it as “so intentionally punitive” and drew a comparison with our judicial system, saying we’re treating each other no differently than the state, just with a different morality.

    (there was more but that’s all I screenshotted)

    Just wondering what you guys think, because it stuck with me. The term “cancelled” never appealed to me, and this helped me understand why. I’m not thinking about people like Brett Kavanaugh or Johnny Depp, who are kind of permanently “cancelled” in my mind whether I would use that term or not. But for more minor transgressions, like those of many people I’ve seen “cancelled” on CB, I kind of prefer this viewpoint to “cancelling” people left and right. And I think the main reason is by “cancelling”, I assume my moral authority and perspective is the end all be all by which others should be judged (this comes up more often when dealing with non-woke behavior coming from underprivileged people, which creates for me a vertigo of “this isn’t my place”) and in cancelling, I also assume that people are reduced to their worst moments, and that growth isn’t possible, while my life experience has led me to believe strongly the other way.

    Genuinely interested in what others think.

    • jwoolman says:

      I’m not much into cancelling either, although there are people I would never vote for. Often people do some good along with the bad and so there is some hope that if better people get close to them, they may do less bad. For example, John McCain had flaws also but I think he was a good influence on Lindsey Graham, who seems possessed by a Trumpy devil since McCain died.

      Trump is an excruciating exception, I don’t think anything or anyone can help with him. The only way to modify his behavior is to scare him into thinking his own skin is at risk, but he slips back into his old ways quickly because he tends to think more in the moment. But he’s also an extreme narcissist with sociopathic traits who has zero empathy, massive thirst for vengeance, incredible willful ignorance, a man who has always only cared about himself. He is a damaged person who should never have been put in charge of anything, much less the whole country. I think he will end up destroying the Republican Party, the question is only if he will destroy the rest of us first.

      Anyway – I hope Avenatti doesn’t run. Anybody would be better than Trump, but he does more good in other roles. I don’t think Stormy regrets her choice of an attorney. He also has helped in forcefully bringing the caged children problem to the forefront – some of his clients now are parents trying to retrieve their officially kidnapped kids and I have heard him say things I am not hearing from others. . His approach is also needed. There is not just one way to the goal. And people who will respond well to Avenatti may have trouble really hearing the softer-spoken folks.

      Hopefully Avenatti will also figure out he can make more money other ways. He’ll take a paycheck cut for real in the White House.

      Avenatti gets on tv a lot because he’s articulate, has a gift for clear explanations, and must have amazing sources because he keeps giving out accurate predictions. He isn’t humble, but I can live with that. We need all kinds.

    • Betsy says:

      I think you’re right, although I wonder where the line is. Kavanaugh was always cancelled for me – there is no growth there. Cosby. Susan sarandon’s stubborn refusal to admit she made a mistake and isn’t a savior.

      But it is a punitive word and somewhat juvenile at that.

    • Keaton says:

      I have definitely cancelled some public figures but I like your friend’s POV. As she said, we weren’t born woke and people CAN grow & change. The one big issue I have with alot of folks on the left is that they can be very self-righteous and judgy in these areas. I guess I have empathy for the dumb & oblivious because I see those flaws in myself. lol.

  18. Jessica says:

    Says the white man who is running for president..

  19. SK says:

    Joe Biden, Elizabeth Warren and Kamala Harris seem like the strongest three candidates to me (an Aussie watching from afar).

  20. AnotherDirtyMartini says:

    Yes. I listen to white men. I listen to white men babble a ton of incomprehensible bullshit. Screw Avenatti. Screw anyone who wants to suddenly LEAP into the position on POTUS yet has no experience.

    I’m voting for women and people of color. And enlightened white men with proven track records of course.

  21. CineVince says:

    I’m not sure if I agree with Avenatti’s comments (RE: white men carry more weight). He might be right. I can’t say for sure. Look how far Donald Trump got. Look at most of the American presidents. But, who knows. Hillary did win the popular vote in 2016, and Obama was elected (twice).

    Cancelling him over those comments doesn’t make any sense, though. But, he might be cancelled for other reasons.