Brett Kavanaugh Hits Hurdle On Road To Supreme Court

Brett Kavanaugh September Judiciary Committee Hearing in the Works

National Archives may not finish reviewing Kavanaugh documents before end of October

A delay in the confirmation process would give Democrats more time to hammer Kavanaugh, a conservative jurist they fear could swing the high court to the right for decades and imperil landmark cases like Roe v. Wade.

In a letter to Judiciary Chairman Charles E. Grassley, the National Archives and Records Administration, said the requested material from Judge Kavanaugh's time working in government would exceed 900,000 pages.

According to the National Archives, there are roughly 560,000 pages of paper records related to Kavanaugh's time as staff secretary and another 475,000 emails either sent or received where Kavanaugh was copied. Thom Tillis, a Republican from North Carolina, said while standing before a stack of dozens of cardboard boxes to showcase what the GOP says is an unprecedented disclosure of records by a Supreme Court nominee.

But Republicans have refused to request records from Kavanaugh's time serving in the Bush White House as staff secretary from 2003-2006, saying such documents are irrelevant to his nomination process.

Grassley said he would prefer a Kavanaugh confirmation hearing in early September, since it could take the committee two weeks to vote on the nomination because of committee rules.

"The committee will receive documents in an even more rapid fashion from the Bush Library as the Archives continues its statutory document review", spokesman Taylor Foy said in a statement.

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Some Republicans had hoped the proceedings would begin in August - normally a vacation month for the Senate - but Democrats have slowed the process.

Stern said NARA had already completed one of the committee's requests, a review of documents relating to Kavanaugh's appellate nomination. They say senators don't need to review an additional 1 million papers on Bush-era policies like the interrogation of terror suspects beyond those already being compiled.

Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer said Democrats also object to the Bush library, rather than nonpartisan archives officials, vetting the documents. Kavanaugh was nominated July 9. That is far more than than the 60,000 pages the Archives identified from the White House counsel's office, and the 170,000 emails he either received or sent or was copied on.

Democrats slammed the decision to press forward with a review of documents they say had been "pre-screened by a political operative and attorney for George W. Bush".

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

Any delay could mean that Kavanaugh, if ultimately approved by the Republican-led Senate, could still miss the October 1 start of the Supreme Court's term and that the final confirmation vote could take place close to the November 6 US congressional elections. "When the hearing is over I will want to call him".

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