The women, sexual assault survivors among them, had arrived at his
Multiple women have accused the judge of sexual assault; a high school classmate, Dr.
Closer to 20 women, dressed in black, had arrived at Manchin's office earlier in the day. They used
Staff members locked the doors around
Several husbands and local activists had arrived Tuesday evening and brought coffee, water, pillows and other personal items. Staff members allowed medicine inside but said other items would be searched. That led to heated conversation with the male supporters and the female protesters. One of the supporters outside noted that campaign staff, protesters and supporters outside all knew one another.
Manchin agreed to a conference call late Tuesday. He told the women he could not promise a no vote after calling for a one-week FBI investigation of Kavanaugh. He also made repeated mention of the "rule of law" and Kavanaugh's right to defend himself.
"There's no corroboration," he told them.
The women told Manchin that Kavanaugh is up for a job, not going through a criminal investigation. They also mentioned other concerns, including abortion rights, unions and the Affordable Care Act.
He told them he wanted to hear their stories, thanked them for sharing them and said that no man could understand their trauma. He agreed that Kavanaugh's conduct during the judiciary testimony was "unprofessional," but also urged them to be "civil" and told them he represented all West Virginians.
Staff members asked the women to leave, citing safety and sanitary concerns, but they again refused. Staff members then began covering the windows with Manchin signs, blocking view of the media that had assembled outside the office. They also told the women the supplies would not be permitted inside, after all.
Officers handcuffed the women and led them outside. Lt.
The women did not have to be physically removed, although more then ten police officers were present.
Manchin's campaign manager,
Neither Manchin's office nor his campaign responded to earlier emails about the protest and about sexual assault allegations against Kavanaugh, but late Tuesday, a campaign spokesman sent a statement:
"After working all day in
"After a long discussion, the campaign asked the 11 protesters to leave the office. When the protesters would not leave, the police escorted them off of the property.
"We do not want anyone arrested and will continue to have civil conversations about
Local television outlets reported live from the scene several times.
Organizers said at one point they'd raised nearly
Email: [email protected] and follow on Twitter @3littleredbones
(c)2018 The Register-Herald (Beckley, W.Va.)
Visit The Register-Herald (Beckley, W.Va.) at www.register-herald.com
Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.