Wednesday, 21 November, 2018

Brett Kavanaugh Snubs Handshake From Parkland Victim's Father

Parkland father confronts Kavanaugh at hearing Getty images
| 06 September, 2018, 03:31

As the hearing eventually got underway amid constant interruptions from protesters, Grassley sought to turn attention to Kavanaugh's qualifications, calling him "one of the most qualified nominees-if not the most qualified nominee-I have seen".

On Wednesday, members of the Senate committee were granted up to 30 minutes each to grill Kavanaugh on a variety of subjects.

Kavanaugh is a conservative judge - some scholars have argued he is one of the most conservative federal judges.

Not only that, Kavanaugh was also lambasted at the same hearing for refusing to shake the hand of Fred Guttenberg, whose daughter died in the Parkland mass shooting.

What were the protests about? Senators have reviewed around 200,000 pages which can not be made public record and the White House is withholding another 100,000 pages from Congress.

Others claimed the judge would let people with pre-existing medical conditions be stripped of medical coverage.

"I can't give you an answer on that hypothetical question", Kavanaugh said.

Committee chairman Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) rejected numerous attempts by Democrats to postpone the hearing until all documents requested by committee members had been received.

But with Wednesday offering the first opportunity for lawmakers to question Kavanaugh, it is unclear what disruptions, if any, will emerge.

Trump's first nominee to the high court, Neil Gorsuch, was confirmed in April 2017, 14 months after the death of Justice Antonin Scalia created a vacancy in President Barack Obama's a year ago in office. The Justice Department challenged the law, stating it would discriminate against voters of color: Nonwhite voters in the state were 20% more likely than white voters to not have a state photo ID. An additional 42,000 documents were released Monday night.

But the panel chairman refused to delay the process. One group of protesters outside the hearing room, sponsored by a group called Demand Justice, dressed up as characters from "The Handmaid's Tale", a novel and TV show about a dystopian society in which women are forced into sexual servitude.


Democrats and advocates fear the conservative appellate judge, who was nominated to the high court by President Donald Trump, will overturn Obamacare's pre-existing condition protections, taking the country back to a time when insurance companies could deny consumers coverage.

Why is the nomination contentious?

Trump jumped into the fray Tuesday, saying on Twitter that Democrats were "looking to inflict pain and embarrassment" on Kavanaugh. Patrick Leahy (D-VT) does, and he wanted to know Brett Kavanaugh's thoughts. He retired in July.

Republicans will hold a slim 51-49 majority in the Senate once Jon Kyl, the former Arizona senator, is sworn in to fill the seat held by the late Sen.

Barring a surprise, Republicans appear on track to confirm Kavanaugh's nomination, perhaps in time for the first day of the new term, October 1, which is little more than a month before congressional elections. So far, there are no signs of Republican defections.

Kavanaugh's answers are consistent with past public statements he has made, and it remains uncertain whether they reflect genuine deference to Roe or are phrased to appease senators who could cast the deciding vote for his confirmation.

The hearing is scheduled to last four days.

A protester is removed during a hearing of the Senate Judiciary Committee on the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to the US Supreme Court.

He studied law at Yale and is a resident of the wealthy Washington suburb of Chevy Chase.

He worked under special counsel Kenneth Starr in his investigation into President Bill Clinton's relationship with intern Monica Lewinsky in the 1990s.

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