Kavanaugh pledges to be 'team player' on Supreme Court

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Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh swears in during his Senate confirmation hearing. Ting Shen Xinhua News Agency Newscom

But he declined to address whether Trump could be subpoenaed or could pardon himself.

Democrats raised objections from the moment Iowa Sen.

In Kavanaugh's confirmation hearing for D.C. circuit judge 2004, he was asked by Sen. Read his opening statement if you want to understand the scope of what Senate Republicans are seeking to achieve by rushing the Kavanaugh nomination through before anyone has a meaningful chance to review more information about his 35 months of executive branch service.

President Donald Trump speaks with Brett Kavanaugh and family.

Lawyers who had argued cases in front of Kavanaugh recalled him as an active questioner from the bench, and a very well prepared jurist who would fit in on a Supreme Court whose justices are largely not shy in oral arguments with advocates.

Irked by a protester who interrupted him, Sen.

All this was punctuated by noisy protesters shouting and screaming and being dragged from the hearing room one by one.

Cornyn and Cruz, however, took aim at Democrats and lobbed basic questions to Kavanaugh.

The huge stakes and fierce passions aroused by the lifetime appointment were on display this week as shouts of protests and Democratic demands for a postponement greeted the start of his Senate confirmation hearing. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., dredged up a relatively obscure Bush-era scandal during his 30 minutes questioning nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh.

Kavanaugh said he considers the Roe v. Wade abortion decision "an important decision. settled law" that has been "reaffirmed many times".

Faced with the prospect of cutting short Kavanaugh's hearing over in the Hart Senate Office Building, McConnell instead moved to adjourn for the day.

Kavanaugh said he had known nothing about the allegations until they were disclosed past year. "I'm in a wheelchair and I traveled here from IL", said another.

Repercussions of the "Me Too" era made an appearance at Kavanaugh's hearing.

Trump picked Kavanaugh to replace Justice Anthony Kennedy, who announced his retirement on June 27.

Republicans hope to confirm Kavanaugh in time for the first day of the new Supreme Court term, October 1. Republicans said, however, that hundreds of thousands of documents have been released and that the White House has the right to invoke presidential privilege to keep sensitive documents out of public view.

Leahy spent his remaining time asking Kavanaugh about his knowledge at the time of the warrantless wiretapping of USA citizens during the Bush administration's "War on Terror" following the September 11, 2001, attacks on the Pentagon and World Trade Center.

"They were ideas of Congress to consider, they were not my constitutional views", he said of the article.

The court wrote Washington, an author of the Constitution, a letter telling him they couldn't oblige.

Should he win confirmation, Kavanaugh would be Trump's second nominee on the nine-member bench, and could solidify a hard-right court majority and help shape key aspects of American society for a generation.

Under George W Bush, he served as deputy White House counsel and, from 2003-06, as Mr Bush's staff secretary.

Based on Kavanaugh's past, it appears he would take a more conservative approach to cases, Clark added. "I do not believe that's consistent" with the way prior nominations have been handled. "I can tell you for a fact that Brett didn't know, because no one knew" aside from some other staffers.

Sitting alone at a table facing a bank of senators, Kavanaugh stressed the difficulty of deciding tough legal disputes and noted "real-world consequences" of his rulings. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) questioned Kavanaugh about a case related to abortion. A handful of Democrats seeking re-election in states Trump carried in 2016 could vote for Kavanaugh.

Trump jumped into the fray Tuesday, saying on Twitter that Democrats were "looking to inflict pain and embarrassment" on Kavanaugh.

Trump characterized the opposition to Kavanaugh as a sign of desperation by Democrats, who don't have the votes to derail Kavanaugh from being seated on the court because they are in the minority.

In citing examples of judicial independence, Kavanaugh mentioned a 1974 ruling ordering President Richard Nixon to hand over subpoenaed materials during the Watergate scandal and a 1954 Supreme Court ruling ending racial segregation in public schools. Joe Manchin of West Virginia, joined the hearing in the audience for a while. He is up for re-election this fall.

The Republicans' slim majority in the Senate was bolstered during the hearing by the announcement from Arizona that Gov. Doug Ducey was appointing Jon Kyl, the former senator, to fill the seat held by the late Sen. Abortion rights supporters are trying to appeal to those senators.

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