Mitchell, the sex crimes bureau chief for the Maricopa County Attorney's Office in Phoenix, will query the two at Thursday's highly anticipated Senate Judiciary Committee hearing. A registered Republican, Mitchell has worked for the Maricopa County Attorney's Office for 26 years.
In enlisting Mitchell to join their staff, Republican senators are taking an unusual step. They are turning to her to ask what are expected to be personal and potentially painful questions about the woman's youth on live television, sparing the all-male panel of 11 Republican senators on the committee some uncomfortable exchanges that could sway the public's opinion about the session.
"The majority members have followed the bipartisan recommendation to hire as staff counsel for the committee an experienced career sex-crimes prosecutor to question the witnesses at Thursday's hearing," Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, said in a statement. "The goal is to de-politicize the process and get to the truth, instead of grandstanding and giving senators an opportunity to launch their presidential campaigns."
He added, "I'm very appreciative that Rachel Mitchell has stepped forward to serve in this important and serious role."