In Kavanaugh hearing, echoes of Anita Hill

Christine Blasey Ford's testimony recalls that of Anita Hill, who spoke to 60 Minutes months after her own very public hearing

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Christine Blasey Ford, the California professor who says Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett M. Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her when they were both teenagers, will testify today before the Senate Judiciary Committee.  

"My motivation in coming forward was to provide the facts about how Mr. Kavanaugh's actions have damaged my life, so that you can take that into serious consideration as you make your decision about how to proceed," Ford says in prepared remarks. "It is not my responsibility to determine whether Mr. Kavanaugh deserves to sit on the Supreme Court. My responsibility is to tell the truth."

It's the second time a woman has appeared before the Senate Judiciary Committee to testify against a male Supreme Court nominee. In 1991, law professor Anita Hill testified that then-Supreme Court nominee Clarence Thomas had sexually harassed her.  

Senator Jeff Flake invoked Anita Hill when he addressed the Senate on Wednesday and spoke about the attacks against Kavanaugh and Ford. He lamented that not much has changed since Hill's testimony.

"There was an earlier case, 27 years ago, from which you might have thought we would have learned something," Flake said, "but the past couple of weeks makes it clear that we really haven't learned much at all."

In February 1992, 60 Minutes spoke with Hill a few months after her testimony. In a clip from that interview, posted in the player above, correspondent Ed Bradley asked her if she felt she received a fair hearing. Hill responded that, because she felt the hearing wasn't about the issue, she didn't.

"I can't say enough that we need to get beyond the hearings," she said. "Because I think what those hearings come down to is me against him. We need to move beyond that because for many people that issue is already decided. It's already decided. So the question is, where do you go from here?"

Rewind: Clarence Thomas talks about Anita Hil... 01:44

Thomas was narrowly confirmed to the Supreme Court. He spoke to 60 Minutes in September 2007, and in the clip above, he addressed Hill's allegations and testimony.

"She was not the demure, religious, conservative person that they portrayed," Thomas told correspondent Steve Kroft. "That's not the person I knew."

Kroft also asked Thomas why he referred to Hill's testimony as a "high-tech lynching" during the hearing.

"I really at this point, I think most well-meaning people understand it for what it was," he said. "It was a weapon to destroy me, clear and simple."

The videos above were edited by Sarah Shafer Prediger.