Klobuchar pivotal in Kavanaugh drama

MINNEAPOLIS (KARE 11) -- Sen. Amy Klobuchar's voice cracked with emotion at times during a 15-minute speech to colleagues on the Senate Judiciary Committee Friday, as the Minnesota Democrat pushed for an FBI probe into the claims made by Christine Blasey Ford against Judge Brett Kavanaugh, the Supreme Court nominee.

"I don’t want to hear about respecting Dr. Ford, when we are not giving her the respect of having an investigation of the case she made to us yesterday!" Sen. Klobuchar declared.

"There was a lot of chest beating that went on yesterday on the other side. And it was pretty effective, I guess, if the goal was to distract us and the American public from what they had heard in the morning."

A day earlier the Senate Judiciary Committee spent nine hours taking testimony, first from Ford and then from Kavanaugh, about Ford's accusation that Kavanaugh, as a high school student, tried to rape her at a house in Maryland.

Klobuchar had already decided to oppose Kavanaugh's nomination because of his views on the expansive powers of the presidency -- including his stand that sitting presidents shouldn't be subject to investigations. But she thought the Ford had been a credible witness a day earlier in committee.

"I would remind my colleagues that the Constitution does not say, 'We the ruling party.' The Constitution says, 'We the people'."

Democrats had protested the fact that no other potential witnesses had been allowed to appear in the committee. Klobuchar pointed out that President George H.W. Bush ordered a three-day investigation into Anita Hill's accusations against then-nominee Clarence Thomas in 1991.

"I would submit to my friends across the aisle that this is not a he-said/she-said. This is a he-said/they- said."

Republicans blasted Ford's story as an orchestrated, politically-motivated campaign to smear Kavanaugh's name and derail his nomination.

"This was a woman with no political background who made an attempt to call the front office of her Congresswoman. That’s what she did," Klobuchar told her colleagues. "She did this before the nominee was even picked."