Four people close to the White House said they expected Republicans to question the accuser’s vague memories and why Feinstein, up for reelection in November with Democratic base hungry for anti-Trump fodder, sat on the accusations for months. Three of them also said they expect the president to go after Kavanaugh’s accuser rather than to turn on the judge. Those people noted that Trump has done so before, not just denouncing his own accusers but also attacking those of others, notably, failed Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore.

A lawyer close to the White House said the nomination will not be withdrawn.

“No way, not even a hint of it,” the lawyer said. “If anything, it’s the opposite. If somebody can be brought down by accusations like this, then you, me, every man certainly should be worried. We can all be accused of something.”