Did the National Archives Throw a Wrench Into Brett Kavanaugh's Confirmation?

Amy Coney Barrett at her Senate confirmation hearing in 2017

Amy Coney Barrett at her Senate confirmation hearing in 2017

"As I've continued to say, one of the most important jobs of any US senator is to fully vet any nominee to serve on the Supreme Court, the highest court in our land", Heitkamp said in a statement. Sens. Chuck Grassley (R-IA) and Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) have been negotiating for weeks about what documents would be requested but ultimately did not reach a consensus.

"To help expedite the Committee's access to records, President Bush has expressed his willingness to make available directly to the Committee copies of records that the team of lawyers has reviewed and that he has approved for disclosure", Burck said in the letter to Schumer.

National Archives General Counsel Gary Stern said in a letter to Republican Senator Chuck Grassley, chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee that will hold confirmation hearings, that although some records could be produced earlier, a complete review would be completed "by the end of October".

Grassley, in a July 27 letter, had asked to get records by August 15 from the George W. Bush Presidential Library about Kavanaugh's work in the White House counsel's office.

As of now, even though the White House counsel documents alone will reportedly take at least until October to be released, Republicans are planning to force the confirmation hearing in September.

Hatch and other Republican senators criticized Democrats for their attempts to obstruct the confirmation of Kavanaugh.

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Democrats have branded the 53-year-old nominee, who would replace retired justice Anthony Kennedy, as a deeply conservative jurist who would shift the court rightward, jeopardising critical rulings on the constitutionality of abortion rights and the legality of Barack Obama's health care reforms.

The heightened tensions over President Donald Trump's nominee came as the first batch of documents were turned over to the committee from George W. Bush's team Thursday, totaling more than 125,000 pages during Kavanaugh's time serving in Bush's White House counsel's office from 2001-2003. He further complained about what he called "dumbass" partisanship over Kavanaugh's nomination. "That's because Senate Republicans plan to rely on the documents provided by the Bush legal team and not wait for the National Archives to complete its review process".

"It's just wonderful to me that they make such a farce out of this", Hatch, R-Utah, said at news conference with members of the Senate Judiciary Committee, including Sen.

Republicans have been hesitant to request those records, however, and have accused Democrats of engaging in stalling tactics.

Republicans hold a slim 51-49 Senate majority. They are particularly interested in whether Kavanaugh authored or edited documents relating to the Bush administration's controversial enhanced interrogation and warrantless wiretapping programs. The signing statement suggested that Bush could circumvent the law.

Utah GOP Sen. Mike Lee argued that Kavanaugh's views were just "talking points" and "not the development of policy".

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