Trump's change in tone - and apparent shift in tactics - came as Christine Blasey Ford's lawyers negotiated with the Senate Judiciary Committee on the terms for her possible testimony next week in a dramatic showdown over her accusation that threatens Judge Brett Kavanaugh's confirmation.
McConnell did not mention the upcoming hearing with Kavanaugh and professor Christine Blasey Ford where Republicans claim to want to hear both accounts of the alleged sexual assault. Kavanaugh, now a judge on the powerful US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, has repeatedly denied her allegation.
"Grassley says it's not appropriate for the FBI to investigate, and he's insisting Blasey Ford must testify on Monday and has set 10 a.m. Friday as the deadline to hear back from her", Colbert said. Politico reported that Ford asked to have Kavanaugh testify first, and does not want him in the room when she testifies. Susan Collins has suggested she will vote for Kavanaugh unless Ford testifies. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y., a possible 2020 presidential candidate, said Republicans were "bullying" Ford by giving her a Monday deadline to testify. The committee has also invited Kavanaugh to testify on Monday.
The email said Ford's "strong preference" remains that the committee allow a thorough investigation of her claim before she appears.
On Thursday, a group of eight Democrats wrote to Trump, asking him to direct the Federal Bureau of Investigation to reopen its background check on Kavanaugh, a judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. In the call, she said Ford needs time to secure her family, prepare her testimony and travel to Washington.
Ford spoke to no one of her experience until 2012 when she and her husband discussed it in therapy.
They asked to hold discussions with the committee to set up a new date and conditions for the hearing.
Judge Kavanaugh has issued a fresh rebuttal of the allegation.
Why did you make that decision?
He added that "if she does not show up it would be unfortunate".
She said Kavanaugh pinned her to a bed and groped her, putting his hand over her mouth when she tried to scream.
According to the statement, Ford and her family have received threats and she is "currently unable to go home". Grassley said he was disturbed to learn of the threats.
The battle for confirmation comes just weeks before congressional elections on 6 November.
Senate Republicans have been clamoring to get Ford in front of the committee before lawmakers vote on Kavanaugh's confirmation to the Supreme Court.
Senator Dean Heller, a Nevada Republican, sounded bullish about the prospects of confirming the nominee, who would be expected to bring a more conservative tilt to America's highest court.
"If you want America to be a right-of-center nation, this last year and a half has been the best year and a half in my time in the Senate", McConnell said.
Chuck Grassley, the committee's Republican chairman, on Wednesday sent a letter to Ford's lawyers giving her until 10am (14:00 GMT) on Friday to submit prepared testimony if she meant to show up on Monday. "I did not do this back in high school or at any time".
Judge's lawyer said in a letter to the committee on Tuesday that Judge did not recall the incident and did not wish to testify.