Christine Blasey Ford gave a detailed scientific explanation for her memory of the alleged incident involving Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh at her highly anticipated Senate testimony Thursday.
Senate Judiciary Committee Ranking Member Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., pressed Ford over her level of certainty that it was, in fact, Kavanaugh who allegedly pinned her down 36 years ago, while in high school, and attempted to remove her clothing.
“How are you so sure that it was he?” Feinstein asked.
Ford, a California-based psychology professor, laid out a detailed scientific explanation.
“The same way that I’m sure I’m talking to you right now,” Ford said. “Basic memory functions, and, also just the level of norepinephrine and epinephrine in the brain, that sort of, as you know, encodes-- that neurotransmitter—encodes memories into the hippocampus, so the trauma-related experience is kind of locked there, whereas other details kind of drift.”
According to Encyclopedia Britannica, Norepinephrine is “vital to the fight-or-flight response,” where the body “prepares to react to or retreat from an acute threat.” Epinephrine is a hormone typically released during “acute stress.”
Feinstein responded: “What you’re telling us is this could not be a case of mistaken identity?”
“Absolutely not,” Ford said, adding that she is “100 percent” certain it was Kavanaugh.
In a statement released by the Judiciary Committee Wednesday evening, Republicans revealed that on Monday, they had conducted interviews with two separate men who claim they, and not Kavanaugh, may have had the encounter with Dr. Ford in 1982.
Democrats on the committee reportedly unloaded on committee Republicans, accusing them of “desperately trying to muddy the waters.”
Ford claimed that she and one other girl attended the gathering in the summer of 1982, naming her as Leland Keyser. Keyser, though, told the committee she does not know Kavanaugh and has no recollection of ever being at a party or gathering where he was present, with or without Ford.