Kavanaugh Defends Judicial Record As Democrats Seek Answers On Hot-Button Issues

Brett Kavanaugh Supreme Court confirmation hearings begin

They say they fear that Kavanaugh's confirmation would shift the Supreme Court's balance for years.

Klobuchar noted that Kavanaugh's explanation in his dissent that the court could distinguish between a "major" and "minor" question with respect to deferring to an expert agency when there was ambiguity in the law would be a "you-know-it-when-you-see-it" standard was the reason that the other judges didn't agree with Kavanaugh. He, too, contended Booker mostly was angling for a presidential run, saying he is unsure just what point the New Jersey Democrat and others on his side were trying to make. He was asking the judge about his opinions on racial inequality and Senator Booker referred to emails sent during Kavanaugh's time working as a lawyer for President George W. Bush.

Brett Kavanaugh listens to Senators on day three of his confirmation hearing in the Senate Judiciary Committee to be Associate Justice of the Supreme Court.

"I take full responsibility for violating that, sir", Booker said - addressing Senate Judiciary Committee chair Sen. "I am deeply honored to be nominated to fill his seat on the Supreme Court", Kavanaugh said as Trump announced his nomination at the White House July 9. He also would not say whether he believes the president can be subpoenaed to testify.

On Wednesday night, Booker questioned Kavanaugh about racial equality and the treatment of minorities, including laws that allow race to be considered in university admissions.

"It's very common when you are in judicial selection process to determine what are all the senators interested in for an upcoming nominee or an upcoming hearing. It's an important part of the constitutional structure", Kavanaugh said.

"No one is above the law in our system of justice", Kavanaugh said, describing the court's 1974 decision ordering President Richard Nixon to turn over White House tapes incriminating him in the coverup of the Watergate burglary as one of the four greatest Supreme Court decisions of all time, "a moment of judicial independence".

"I have no agenda in any direction", he said.

Republican Senator Orrin Hatch bluntly asked Kavanaugh what loyalty he owes Trump.

Leahy presented Kavanaugh with claims the judge made during the mid-2000s confirmation hearings about never receiving the stolen emails.

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Harris is one of several Democrats concerned about Kavanaugh's view of whether a sitting president can be indicted.

"The fact that there is nothing in that document that's personal information, there's nothing national security-related, the fact that it was labeled as committee confidential, exposes that this process, sir, is a bit of a sham", Booker said.

The committee's ranking member, Sen. It was marked "committee confidential".

Put another way, Booker - and the four or five colleagues who joined his act of "civil disobedience" - will nearly certainly not face expulsion. 'I hope that they will bring charges against us, ' he said.

Booker says the email's subject is racial profiling and he wants it released publicly.

Liberals are concerned Kavanaugh could provide a decisive fifth vote on the nine-justice court to overturn the 1973 abortion ruling.

On the issue of gun rights, Senator Feinstein pressed Mr Kavanaugh on his previous opposition to a ban on semi-automatic rifles. He said they were labeled "racial profiling", and said they related to the practice after the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.

Kavanaugh said that he had not been been aware of the program until it was reported by the New York Times and said that he could not recall if he had ever raised questions about the constitutionality of such a program.

After more questions from senators on Thursday, the hearing is set to wrap up on Friday with testimony from outside witnesses.

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