Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh’s history of serving in the George W. Bush White House and his four years working with independent counsel Kenneth Starr in his investigation of former President Bill Clinton has left a sea of paperwork.
…and a few enemies.
Democrats, desperate to derail his appointment to the high court, have a limited time to pore over the tens of thousands of pages of document and are setting the stage to use an expected Justice Department review of the documents to complain about the administration trying to keep select information under wraps.
With Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell saying last week the Senate will vote on Kavanaugh’s nomination by the first of October, Democrats are going to do all they can to slow roll the process and drag it out beyond the midterm elections in the hope (and prayer) that they may retake the majority in the upper chamber.
DOJ spokeswoman Sarah Isgur Flores said documents related to Kavanaugh’s time in the executive branch are subject to review for privileged records, according to The Hill.
Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., ranking member on the Senate Judiciary Committee, was clear that Democrats intend to make this a point of contention.
“This is going to be my 10th Supreme Court hearing, and I have never seen this amount of documentation that will need to be available for review for both sides,” she said, according to The Hill. “While I understand the Justice Department will not be sharing its analysis of the documents, certainly all of what it is reviewing should be made available to both sides for our review.”
Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., took to Twitter to also suggest they will got to battle over this:
Given Judge Kavanaugh’s role in the Starr investigation, in Bush v. Gore, and in 5 controversial years in the Bush White House, the American people need to know, NOW, the full extent of his record. Lifetime seats on our nation’s highest court are too important. #KavanaughPapers
— Sen. Patrick Leahy (@SenatorLeahy) July 11, 2018
Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., exposed an angle of attack in the confirmation process when he spoke of a letter he sent to Kavanaugh 11 years ago that was never answered.
The letter, sent during Kavanaugh’s confirmation process for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, focused on interrogation and detention following the 9/11 attacks — and will allow Democrats to make enhanced interrogation a central focus of the confirmation hearings.
“I wrote the judge a letter,” Durbin said. “In 11 years he’s never responded. He’s going to get a chance to respond now when he appears before this committee under oath as to what he was trying to tell us and what he actually did tell us when it came to this important issue.”
The irony being that MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow highlighted this scenario on her show two days earlier, leaving one to wonder if MSNBC is serving as the research arm of the Democratic Party.
Stirring up past controversies allows Democrats to point to Kavanaugh’s “considerable baggage” to drag out the confirmation process.
Sherrilyn Ifill, president of the NAACP Legal Defense Fund, also made it clear that special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation of Trump will be a part of the process, as she declared that it’s already under “a cloud.”
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