Kavanaugh: Trump isn't above the law

Protesters dress as 'handmaids' for Kavanaugh hearings

Protesters dress as 'handmaids' for Kavanaugh hearings

Fred Guttenberg, the father of Jamie Guttenberg who was killed in the Stoneman Douglas High School shooting in Parkland, Fla., left, attempts to shake hands with President Donald Trump's Supreme Court nominee, Brett Kavanaugh, right, as he leaves for a lunch break while appearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Sept. 4, 2018, to begin his confirmation to replace retired Justice Anthony Kennedy.

"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.

Politico, citing unnamed sources, reported that during a Labor Day conference call, Democratic senators debated whether to walk out in protest of the Republican opposition to the release of millions of pages of missing Kavanaugh documents.

He wrote: 'Just walked up to Judge Kavanaugh as morning session ended.

But we may not fully know the extent of Kavanaugh's advisory role during the post-9/11 era, given Republicans haven't requested records from his time as Bush's staff secretary, a gatekeeper position that allowed him to determine which proposals made their way to the president. Dianne Feinstein of California, asked the president's Supreme Court nominee whether he thought a sitting president could "be required to respond to a subpoena". Amy Klobuchar, a Democrat from Minnesota, to explain why he disagreed with the rest of his colleagues on the US Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit that the Federal Communications Commission was within its authority to create the rules, Kavanaugh said he was simply following legal precedent and wasn't looking to strip the agency of its power.

News photographers clicked pictures of a smiling Kavanaugh, a conservative federal appeals court judge, as he entered the hearing room along with his wife and two daughters. Sixty-one were removed from the Senate Judiciary Committee room and charged with disorderly conduct, and nine removed from the second floor of the Dirksen Senate Office Building and charged with crowding, obstruction, or incommoding. "And he has criticized those who substitute their own judgments about what a statute should say for what the statute actually says".

But Kavanaugh stressed the importance of judicial independence.

"If the Supreme Court were to adopt your reasoning", she said, "I feel the number of victims would continue to grow".

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If confirmed, Kavanaugh is expected to move the court, which already had a conservative majority, further to the right.

The Senate Judicial Committee hearing has strong political overtones ahead of the November congressional elections, but as a practical matter Democrats lack the votes to block Kavanaugh's confirmation. "They want to elect candidates who will stand up for the people Trump threatens, not ones who compromise or cower as he and Republicans run the table in Congress and the courts", it concludes.

Once the hearing got underway, Democrats continued to voice their concerns, often going back to the issue of missing documents and Kavanaugh's political history.

"I am not a pro-prosecution or pro-defense judge", Kavanaugh will say, according to prepared remarks. He highlighted the 1992 Planned Parenthood v. Casey ruling that reaffirmed Roe, calling it a "precedent on precedent".

"Republicans are trying to jam through a Supreme Court nominee who was selected specifically because he would overturn Roe v. Wade and end protections for people with pre-existing conditions", Sen.

On gun rights, Feinstein pressed Kavanaugh on his 2011 dissent in an appellate ruling upholding a District of Columbia gun law banning semi-automatic rifles.

The Supreme Court to date has ruled that individuals have a right to bear arms in self defense but has not extended that right outside the home or specified which weapons are covered.

"A good judge must be an umpire - a neutral and impartial arbiter who favours no litigant or policy", he said in the excerpts released by the White House. His writings that investigations are a distraction were just ideas, he said, not his actual constitutional philosophy.

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