According to sources, several factors are at play. White House advisers are worried that more damaging information about Kavanaugh could come out. Two sources told me the White House has heard rumors that Ford’s account will be verified by women who say she told it to them contemporaneously. People worry, without apparent evidence, of another Ronan Farrow bomb dropping. One source says Ivanka Trump has told her father to “cut bait” and drop Kavanaugh.

Another reason Trump hasn’t gone to the mat for Kavanaugh is that he’s said to be suspicious of Kavanaugh’s establishment pedigree. “‘He’s a Bush guy, why would I put myself out there defending him?’” Trump told people, according to a former White House official briefed on the conversations. Trump also has expressed frustration with White House counsel Don McGahn, who aggressively lobbied for him to choose Kavanaugh, a source said. “Trump wants this guy on the court, but Trump knows there are five other people he could put on the court if this falls apart,” a former official said.