As the sexual assault accusation against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh dominated the news cycle Monday, the White House scrambled to respond.
Kavanaugh is accused of trying to rape a 15-year-old woman when he was 17.
Trump adviser Kellyanne Conway cautioned reporters not to denigrate Kavanaugh's accuser.
"She should not be insulted. She should not be ignored," Conway told reporters in the White House driveway on Monday. "She should testify under oath and she should do it on Capitol Hill, but that's up to the Senate Judiciary Committee. They need to decide."
Yet, people close to the president told CNN that like previous scandals roiling his administration—including charges of domestic violence against advisor Rob Porter—Trump sees this as a personal affront to himself.
"While of a different nature, Trump views the Kavanaugh situation through the same lens: unfair allegations made to personally hurt him," CNN observed.
So far, the White House is officially rallying behind Kavanaugh. "On Friday, Judge Kavanaugh 'categorically and unequivocally' denied this allegation. This has not changed. Judge Kavanaugh and the White House both stand by that statement," White House spokesperson Kerri Kupec said in the statement.