The thing about background checks, even FBI background checks is that they don't detect hidden or in some cases not so hidden character flaws. There are a lot of people with no criminal history to speak of who are basically sociopaths, the two serial rapists and in one case murderers captured via DNA in California recently come to mind Opinion | Frank Figliuzzi: Kavanaugh chaos highlights major flaw in FBI background check process This White House has repeatedly undermined the institutions charged with upholding the law. Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation has been stalled by a credible allegation dating back three decades to his high school days at Georgetown Prep. What appeared to be a confirmation certainty is now in question as the reporting victim, Dr. Christine Blasey Ford, requests an FBI investigation to substantiate her claims. And yet, the only entity who can grant Ford’s request seems wholly uninterested in making that happen. President Donald Trump can, with one phone call, request the FBI re-open its background inquiry into Kavanaugh. Thus far he has both refused to issue such a request and uttered false statements about the FBI’s willingness and authority to investigate if he were to do so. Similarly, Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, the committee chair, wrongly asserted that this is not a job for the FBI. I disagree. Congress and the White House must take steps to modify the existing memorandum of understanding between the White House and the FBI as well as current protocols so that the bureau can unilaterally and independently pursue logical follow-ups to background inquiries. Meanwhile, the GOP-controlled Senate Judiciary Committee seems to have learned little from the travesty of the Anita Hill hearings, nor from our evolving cultural understanding of how to handle credible allegations. The White House and the Republicans on the Judiciary Committee are so myopically focused on getting Kavanuagh confirmed that they can’t see the logical solution staring them in the face. [snipped] Any rookie FBI agent can recite the acronym used to shape the interview questions posed to colleagues, neighbors, scorned significant others and family members of a nominee — CARLA. CARLA stands for character, aptitude, reputation, loyalty (to our nation) and associations. There are sub-headings under each of those categories — such as finances and temperament — but you get the idea. Here’s the thing though; these SPINs are unlike almost any other investigation the FBI conducts. They are neither criminal nor national security investigations but rather more akin to hiring a private eye to check on your cheating spouse. By that I mean that unlike the FBI’s other work, the FBI’s client in these investigations isn’t the American public, it’s the nominating agency; in this case the White House.