‘I Hope You Die’: Christine Blasey Ford Details Death Threats She Received After Kavanaugh Hearings

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Christine Blasey Ford — the psychology professor who testified at Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation hearing alleging he assaulted her when they were both teenagers — is speaking out again nearly six years later. In a new memoir, Ford insists that Kavanaugh “must know” what he did the night of the alleged assault and discusses in depth the consequences she faced, including many death threats, for coming forward.

“The fact is, he was there in the room with me that night in 1982,” Ford writes in the book, One Way Back. “And I believe he knows what happened. Even if it’s hazy from the alcohol, I believe he must know.”

“For survivors out there, you know it happened to you,” Ford said in an interview with Tracy Smith that aired this weekend on CBS Sunday Morning. “Even if no one believed you or no one thought it happened or no one saw it. There are people that are assaulted all the time where no one else was even there, and that doesn’t mean it didn’t happen.”

“I thought [Kavanaugh] might inadvertently kill me,” Ford said when describing the assault to The Washington Post in 2018. “He was trying to attack me and remove my clothing.”

In the CBS interview, Ford detailed some of the most common threats she received after coming forward. “‘I want to see you six feet under.’ ‘I want to see you 12 feet under’ — a lot of those. ‘I hope you get cancer.’ ‘I hope you die.’ ‘I give you a year.’ ‘Glad you have two kids because we have two opportunities.’ And all of the letters like that, they would have such similarity to them that it felt like, do these people know each other? Because how could the wording be that similar?”

“And they were threatening your family, your kids?” Smith asked.

“Yeah. Especially the first born,” Ford said. “That seemed to be a thing: ‘We’ll take your first born.'”

Immediately after she testified publicly, Ford said she had to hire 24/7 security for her and her family members. Even today, she still uses security guards during some of her public speaking appearances, which can cost her as much as five or ten thousand dollars per night, she said.

After she testified, Ford became a target for Republicans. Members of the GOP denied her very credible testimony. Donald Trump mocked her and called her “evil.” When asked if she was naive to the ramifications that would follow her testifying at Kavanaugh’s confirmation hearing, Ford replied, “I like to use the word idealistic. Maybe I was naive for sure about the consequences and how bad it would be after I testified.”

Some of Ford’s “darkest times” came when Sen. Chuck Grassley released an FBI background check report on Kavanaugh after just four days of investigation and without interviewing Ford or Kavanaugh. Through her attorneys, Ford said at the time that the report was a “stain” on the bureau. Years later, information from the FBI requested by members of Congress revealed that the agency failed to pursue more than 4,500 tips that came into the FBI about Kavanaugh via a tip line. Instead, they handed the information over to the Trump administration’s Office of White House Counsel.

“I was devastated when that report came out,” Ford told CBS. “I was really, really upset. That was a really difficult period that, I think, was the beginning of sort of the darkest times for me.”

Ford said that many women have written to her sharing their own experiences of being sexually assaulted, and those “letter writers” inspired her to write her memoir. Ford now stores boxes full of those letters in her dining room.

“We have made it through 30,000 [letters] so far, and all I know is there is more than that left to go,” she said.

Ford said that even with the consequences that followed her coming forward, she does not regret her decision — “not at all.”

“I grew up in D.C. I revered all of those institutions,” she said. “To me, the Supreme Court was sort of the ultimate. That’s where our very best people are, and I felt like the choice of saying nothing was more uncomfortable, that I would have to live with not saying anything about it.”

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