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Sen. Hatch calls Ford ‘attractive,’ ‘pleasing’

WASHINGTON — A long-serving Republican on the Senate Judiciary Committee says the woman accusing Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh of a sexual assault when they were teenagers is “attractive” and “pleasing.”

Utah’s Orrin Hatch made the comments as the committee broke for lunch after hearing several hours of testimony from Christine Blasey Ford.

Kavanaugh has denied the allegations, and when Hatch was asked whether he found Ford to be believable, he said: “It’s too early to say. I don’t think she’s uncredible. But it’s way early.”

And when a reporter asked the 84-year-old Hatch what he meant by saying the 51-year-old was “attractive,” he said: “In other words, she’s pleasing.”

He said: “I’ll say this. She’s attractive, and she’s a nice person and I wish her well.”

Hatch’s office told the PBS NewsHour’s Lisa Desjardins in a statement that he was not referring to Ford’s physical appearance.

“Hatch uses ‘attractive’ to describe personalities, not appearances. If you search his past quotes you’ll see he’s used it consistently for years for men and women he believed has compelling personalities,” the statement said.

Hatch is a senior member of the committee who was also at the Anita Hill-Clarence Thomas hearings.