Sen. Mark Warner to vote against Brett Kavanaugh confirmation

Supreme Court nominee steers clear of Trump criticism

Supreme Court nominee steers clear of Trump criticism

Following Sen. Cory Booker's (D-NJ) release of documents on Judge Brett Kavanaugh at the start of confirmation hearings for the SCOTUS nominee, Sen. The senator then repeated a Democratic refrain that an appointment to the Supreme Court deserves proper vetting and the confirmation hearing is incomplete without Kavanaugh's White House documents.

Bennet, a Democrat and Colorado's senior senator, released a statement via Twitter on Tuesday morning saying the nominee will threaten women's right to abortions and make decisions that would end up causing harm to the environment.

White House spokesman Raj Shah said in an email that Democrats were trying to smear Kavanaugh's reputation, later adding that outside experts had said the Democrats lacked proof of their allegations.

Fiery confirmation hearings for Kavanaugh before the Senate judiciary committee concluded this week with accusations from the left that Kavanaugh perjured himself and accusations from the right that Democrats improperly released classified information. Collins is in the spotlight as a rare pro-abortion rights Republican who could vote "no" in a Senate where Republicans hold a slim 51-49 majority. Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, also is being closely scrutinized on Kavanaugh. If approved by the full Senate, Kavanaugh would fill the vacancy created by the retirement of Justice Anthony Kennedy. The Supreme Court could weigh in on a number of potential scenarios that could play out in the Russian Federation probe or the obstruction of justice case involving Trump in the near term.

"That's not fair to us and, frankly Judge it's not fair to you", Leahy said.

The memo, tucked toward the end of almost 10,000 pages released Friday, provides greater insight into Kavanaugh's views on executive power that are expected to feature prominently in his Senate confirmation hearings.

Harris had asked Kavanaugh whether he ever had discussed Mueller or his Russian Federation probe with anyone at Kasowitz Benson Torres, the almost 300-member law firm founded by Marc Kasowitz, a former personal attorney to President Trump.




Kavanaugh was questioned by both Republican and Democratic members of the Senate about his thoughts on the issue, and he offered no indication that he thought the landmark case of Roe v. Wade, which affirmed the legal existence of abortion rights, should be overturned, . But in many cases, Kavanaugh refused to answer hypothetical questions from Democrats on the panel, a common practice for judicial nominees.

Democratic senators expressed concern about what they saw as Kavanaugh's expansive view of president powers.

The hearing ended on Friday after the committee heard from outside witnesses testifying for and against the nomination, with anti-Kavanaugh protesters again interrupting the proceedings.

"It all seemed consistent with the usual kinds of discussions that happen and sometimes people do say things of 'here's what my boss is thinking, but don't share it around, '" Kavanaugh said.

"This is about the closest I'll probably ever have in my life to an "I am Spartacus" moment", Booker said, referring to the 1960 film in which a gladiator played by Kirk Douglas leads a slave revolt against the ancient Roman Empire. Under rules changes announced by majority leader Mitch McConnell in 2017, supreme court nominees can be advanced on a simple majority vote.

Over the course of the hearings, Booker took the unusual step of releasing documents before he said they were cleared, although Republicans disputed that they were not cleared and Texas GOP Sen.

Among those testifying were two representatives of the American Bar Association, the leading USA professional group for lawyers, who said a panel that rates judicial nominees gave Kavanaugh a "well qualified" rating, the highest possible. "We will fight this confirmation", he said.

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