Watch Senator Jeff Flake Get Confronted by Tearful Assault Survivors

Two sexual assault victims confronted Arizona Sen. Jeff Flake in an elevator early Friday morning before the Senate Judiciary Committee vote on recommending Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh.

Hours later, Flake voted to support the nomination, but called for a delay on the final vote.

The scene was caught by CNN's cameras and came just moments after Flake's office issued a statement on his support of Kavanaugh.

"What you are doing is allowing someone who actually violated a woman to sit on the Supreme Court. This is not tolerable. You have children in your family. Think about them. I have two children," one woman, Ana Maria Archila, told Flake through tears. "I cannot imagine that for the next 50 years they will have to have someone in the Supreme Court who has been accused of violating a young girl. What are you doing, sir?"

The other woman, Maria Gallagher, told Flake she was sexually assaulted and no one believed her.

"I didn't tell anyone and you're telling all women that they don't matter, that they should just stay quiet because if they tell you what happened to them you are going to ignore them. That's what happened to me, and that's what you are telling all women in America, that they don't matter," Gallagher said. "They should just keep it to themselves because if they have told the truth you're just going to help that man to power anyway."

Flake was clearly uncomfortable during the exchange, looking at the ground and tried to avoid eye contact.

Gallagher repeatedly told him to look at her, adding, "Look at me and tell me that it doesn't matter what happened to me. That you will let people like that go into the highest court of the land and tell everyone what they can do with their bodies... Do you think that he's telling the truth?"

Flake only said "thank you" repeatedly, before telling a CNN reporter he needed to get to the hearing.

The emotional moment captured the attention of social media, with many taking to Twitter to share their reactions of the heated clip.

Archila is the co-executive director of the Center for Popular Democracy, while Gallagher is a recent college graduate. They said they did not know each other before Friday and are both sexual assault victims. Archila told CNN she was sexually assaulted when she was 5 years old.

"I wanted him to feel my rage," Archila later told the New York Times.

On Twitter, it was speculated that Archila and Gallagher were responsible for the drama Flake was at the center at during the vote. Although Flake voted with his 10 Republican colleagues on the committee, the retiring Senator asked for a delay in the final vote so the FBI could conduct an investigation into sexual harassment allegations against Kavanaugh.

Texas Sen. John Cornyn, the Majority Whip, said there will be a "supplemental" FBI investigation, reports the Wall Street Journal. It is still up to President Donald Trump to order the FBI to start the investigation though.


Trump told reporters he thought Dr. Christine Blasey Ford's testimony Thursday was "compelling," but he would rely on what the Senators think when it comes to the FBI investigation.

Photo credit: CNN