Republicans have the votes to confirm the guy….
They might even get a few Democrats to jump ship and vote for Brett Kavanaugh….
So they have shifted their ire from the judge to the aim at the Republicans mad rush (Remember the tax bill?) to get a confirmation vote before the midterm elections which are two months away…
With a 51-person Republican Senate majority, Democrats know Kavanaugh’s path to the Supreme Court is close to guaranteed if Republicans stick together. With President Donald Trump’s first Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch, Senate Republicans changed the ruleson confirming Supreme Court nominees to only require a simple majority. In other words, Republicans don’t need Democratic votes to get Kavanaugh through the final step of the confirmation process.
But from the very beginning of the Judiciary Committee’s confirmation hearing on Kavanaugh’s nomination, Democrats made it clear they wouldn’t be passive actors. They’re saying Republicans are changing the rules again.
“We waited for more than a year with a vacancy on the Supreme Court under the direction of your leader in the United States Senate, and the republic survived,” Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ) told an increasingly frustrated Judiciary Chair Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA). “The fact that we cannot take a few days or weeks to have a complete review of Judge Kavanaugh’s record is unfair to the American people, it is inconsistent to our responsibility under Article II, Section 2 of the Constitution to advise and consent on … court nominees.”
One by one, Democratic senators went down the line to identify how the Senate’s process had been skirted, from redacted and altered emails to confusion about the process during the hearing. Sen. Mazie Hirono (D-HI) said it was “out of order” that the Republican-controlled committee required lawmakers to “pre-clear” questions, documents, and videos they’d like to use during the hearing.
In his 44 years in the Senate, voting on 19 nominations to the Supreme Court, Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT) said he had never seen a process like Kavanaugh’s confirmation.
“I have been on this committee under Republican and Democratic leadership; I never thought the committee would sink to this,” Leahy said, directing his comments to Kavanaugh. “In fact, you should not be sitting in front of us today. You should be sitting in front of us only after we have completed a review of your record. Your vetting is less than 10 percent complete. In critical ways, our committee is abandoning its tradition of exhaustively vetting Supreme Court nominees.”
In turn, Republicans were put on the defense, forced to answer Democrats’ questions about process instead of talk about their nominee. Grassley, who insisted on continuing the hearings as planned, was pushed to argue that Republican staff had ample time to review documents, citing past Senate confirmation hearings…..
Democratic Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer has been under YUGE pressure from his party supporters to somehow stop the Kavanaugh confirmation….THAT isn’t gonna happen….
But Democrats ARE getting their pound of political flesh from GOPer’s during the confirmation hearings in the Senate Judicial Committee hearings…