WASHINGTON — President Trump declared that the “false” allegations that he says multiple women made against him “absolutely” influenced how he views the accusations that have been made against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh.
“I have had a lot of false charges against me,” Trump said at a press conference in New York, adding that he sees the Kavanaugh allegations “differently than someone sitting at home.”
Trump called the allegations against Kavanaugh “false accusations,” but stopped short of calling his accusers liars. He said that he would be willing to reconsider his choice of Kavanaugh after Thursday, depending on the testimony of Christine Blasey Ford, one of his accusers, who is scheduled to testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Thursday.
“I can be persuaded also,” Trump said.
Trump’s press conference, stretching more than an hour, veered from issue to issue, as he often focused on the nature of the media’s treatment of him. He sparred a bit with CNN’s Jim Acosta, complimented a Sky News reporter for Comcast’s acquisition, and took credit for a boost in the New York Times’ fortunes. At one point, Trump referred to a Kurdish reporter as “Mr. Kurd.”
The press conference stretched to an hour and 20 minutes, his longest since February, 2017, and touched on an array of issues including trade with Canada, claims of Chinese interference in the U.S. elections, and his relationship with Kim Jong-un of North Korea.
He said that he would “certainly prefer” not to fire Rod Rosenstein, the deputy attorney general, and added that he may delay a scheduled meeting with him on Thursday to not distract from the Kavanaugh hearing. “My preference would be to keep him and let him finish up,” he said.
The allegations against Kavanaugh were front and center at the news conference.
Asked by Acosta why he has stood by so many men who have been accused of sexual misconduct, rather than woman accusers, Trump said, “I’ve known them for a long time, a lot of these people.” He added that he “never saw them do anything wrong.”
Trump insisted that the allegations made against him during the 2016 presidential campaign were false, and that only Fox News and Sean Hannity covered that aspect of the story. “They covered it very strongly,” he said.
He claimed that the Democrats were engaged in a “con job” to discredit Kavanaugh, noting that after 36 years “there’s no charge.”
“All of the sudden the hearings are over, and the rumors start coming out,” he said. “And then you have this other con artist, Avenatti, come out with another beauty today.”
Michael Avenatti, the attorney who represents adult film star Stormy Daniels, on Wednesday revealed the name of a woman, Julie Swetnick, who accused Kavanaugh and high school friend Mark Judge of being present at parties where women were drugged and gang raped.
Trump said that the Kavanaugh situation was “a very, very dangerous standard for our country,” as “you are guilty until proven innocent.”