During Thursday’s hearing, Rachel Mitchell, the Arizona prosecutor employed by the committee, pressed Ford on the nature of her legal representation, possibly in an attempt to portray her as being guided by more powerful Democrats looking out for the interest of the party. As Ford attempted to address the key points of Mitchell’s questions, one of her lawyers jumped in. “Both of her counsel are doing this pro bono,” Michael Bromwich told the committee. “We are not being paid. We have no expectation of being paid.”
What Bromwich did not mention was that he not only was not being paid for his time representing Ford—he also left his job at a Washington law firm where he served as senior counsel.
According to Bloomberg, Bromwich, 64, resigned from Robbins, Russell, Englert, Orseck, Untereiner & Sauber LLP, as some of the partners at the firm had objected to his decision to represent Ford.
Bromwich, a Harvard Law graduate and former federal prosecutor, was known before this hearing for assisting the investigation of the Iran-Contra affair and, more recently, for representing former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe, who was fired in March by Jeff Sessions two days before his scheduled retirement and for whom Bromwich helped crowdfund legal fees. According to Bloomberg, President Obama picked Bromwich to reform the offshore drilling regulations after the Deepwater Horizon spill in 2010.
Bromwich joined Ford’s legal team late. The attorney sitting to her right at the hearing, Debra Katz, is known for her work representing sexual harassment and abuse victims.
Ford’s appearance before the Senate Judiciary Committee ended Thursday afternoon after Ford endured more than four hours of questioning about her allegation of being sexually assaulted by Brett Kavanaugh in the 1980s and the subsequent trauma. During the hearing, Democrats complained about Mark Judge’s absence in the hearing, emphasized that the hearing should be seen as a job application rather than a trial, and praised Ford’s bravery. Mitchell pressed Ford for details related to Ford’s fear of flying, the logistics surrounding the party, her contacts with the press, and who paid for the polygraph test.
Ford, for her part, tried to clarify her account and correct any small errors she might have made in any previous statements. She also emphasized that she had come forward in an attempt to be helpful and at a time before Kavanaugh’s nomination, when Trump could have chosen from other conservative judges.