The polygraph test taken by Brett Kavanaugh’s accuser seems to be raising more questions than it is answering.
The attorney for Christine Ford, the woman who has accused the U.S. Supreme Court nominee of sexual misconduct nearly four decades ago, will not provide details about the polygraph examination or who paid for it, Fox News reported.
Sen. Lindsey Graham questioned the results of the test which Ford reportedly took in August on the advice of her attorney, Debra Katz, and conducted by a former FBI agent. The results of the exam, which were provided to The Washington Post, apparently showed Ford was being honest in her allegations.
“If Ms. Ford really did not want to come forward, never intended to come forward … why did she pay for a polygraph in August, and why did she hire a lawyer in August? And who paid for it?” Graham asked on Fox News’ “Hannity” on Monday.
Democrats have been backing Ford’s claims by citing the polygraph test.
“The woman who says Kavanaugh attacked her has reportedly passed a polygraph test. Will Kavanaugh take one?” Paul Begala, CNN contributor and a former President Bill Clinton counselor, tweeted.
But former FBI officials and psychology experts told Fox News that polygraph exams can prove useful but are not without shortcomings.
“It’s not the result of the polygraph; it is what polygraph subjects say during the polygraph interview that is most valuable,” Thomas Mauriello, a former senior polygraph examiner at the Defense Department, said on “The Ingraham Angle” Monday.
“The result of a polygraph simply is whether you did or did not respond to a particular question. A response is not a lie, because the polygraph is not a lie detector as most think,” he added. “A response is the activation of your sympathetic nervous system when answering a question asked during the examination.”
Former FBI agent James Gagliano explained that the tests, while useful, also “can be beaten.”
“In this case, if they want to put this out as irrefutable evidence that this woman is telling the truth because she passed a polygraph — that’s not the way polygraphs work,” Gagliano, who led a SWAT team in New York and now teaches at St. John’s University, told Fox News.
“If that were the case, I would’ve taken every drug dealer, gangbanger, and pedophile I investigated, and I would’ve thrown them on the polygraph,” he said.
Those who have come to believe their own false stories can ultimately pass the polygraph test, Gagliano noted.
“It’s not a lie if you believe it,” he added, saying that he had never administered a ploygraph but was subjected to several while at the FBI.
“Everyone knows polygraph exams can be beaten,” Gagliano said. “If someone is a psychopath or a sociopath, if you don’t have a conscience, if you don’t know right from wrong — you can beat it.”
But Kavanaugh’s accuser, despite reportedly taking a polygraph exam, has not responded to Republicans and Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley’s requests to testify about her claims about the incident that happened in high school 36 years ago.
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And this in the wake of her lawyer declaring on CNN Monday that her client is willing to testify.
“It’s totally inappropriate for someone to demand we use law enforcement resources to investigate a 35-year-old allegation when she won’t go under oath and can’t remember key details including when or where it happened,” a federal law enforcement official said, according to Fox News.
While Sen. Dianne Feinstein stood by Ford’s claims as credible, even she could not be 100 percent sure.
“This is a woman who has been profoundly impacted by this,” the ranking Democrat on the Judiciary Committee told Fox News. “Now, I can’t say everything’s truthful. I don’t know.”