tv Supreme Court Nominee Brett Kavanaugh Confirmation Hearing - Day 1 CSPAN September 5, 2018 7:47am-8:23am EDT
it will make a difference to people's lives. they have given the backing and we will continue to give it are backing. here on c-span two we will leave the british house of commons as a move on to other business. even watching prime minister's question time. a quick reminder that you can see this week's session again sunday nights at nine eastern. to view every program that we have erred from the british house house of commons since october 1989. using the hashtag pmq. sunday night on q&a assistant editor of the atlantic talks
about his book uncensored in growing up in a troubled home. i go and see it's my mom. and a sense that this is not good to be good. i answer the phone. she spoke. she was very calm. i knew the tone in her voice i'm asking myself if i'm in a live to see the next day. that's is going through my mind. if she is a moment along with me. and i make it through whatever happens. and i talk to them.
zachary would sunday night. today on c-span two supreme court nominee brett cavanaugh returns to capitol hill for day two of his confirmation hearing. live coverage starts at 8:00 a.m. eastern. they serve on the securities and exchange commission. while we wait for the senate judiciary committee to start today's supreme court confirmation hearing we will take a look at some of the highlights from yesterday. one of the senate's most constitutional duties is to provide advice and consent on the nomination of the supreme court justices. we are here this week from brett cavanaugh.h.
his record of dedication to the rule of lawh. and has demonstrated independence and his appreciation of the importance of separation of powers. >> indeed to protect individual liberty. they design a government of three coequal branches. with the judicial powers. they are intended for the judiciary to be immune from the political pressures the other two face. that is, so that judges could decide cases according to the law and not according to the popular opinion. now 230 years after ratification our legal system is the ending of the world. it provides our people
stabilityy predictability and protection of our rights and our equal access to justicepl but this is only possible when judges are committed to the rule of law. our legal system in the success is built on judges accepting that their role is limited to the siding cases in controversy. a good judge exercises humility. and makes decisions. according to specific facts of the case and of course according to the law. a good judge never has that. they never base decisions on his preferred policy preferences. a good judge also has courage recognizing that we have an
independent do it just you are ready to restrain judges when that government exceeds the lawful authority. president andrew jackson said quote, all the rights secured to the citizens under the constitution are worth nothing and a mere bubble except guaranteed to them by an independent in virtuous judiciary and of quote. the confirmation hearings for supreme court nominees are independent and they're very important opportunities to discuss the appropriate role of judges. as i see it and expect many of my colleagues will agree the role of the judges to apply the law as written even if thehe legal result is not the one the judge personally likes.
justice scalia has been quoted because he was fond of saying if a judge always likes the outcome of the cases he decides he is probably doing something wrong i don't want judges who always reach a liberal result or a conservative result. i want a to judge who rules the law the way it requires. judges must leave lawmaking to the congress and the people. judges and justices have lifetime appointments they can't be voted out of office if they legislate where as if congress legislates something the people don't like then you can vote them out of office. that is why they are to interpret law and not make law. some have a very different view of what a judge's role should be.
they should decide cases based on particular outcomes in order to advance their politics. but the american people don't want their judges to pick sides before they hear a case. they want a judge that rules based on what the law commands. this is the reason why all supreme court nomineesaw since ginsberg had declined to offer their personal opinions on the precedent. seeking assurances from a nominee on how he will vote in certain cases or how he views certain precedent undermines your judicial independence and asks for a promise in exchange for a confirmation vote. confirmation vote. it's unfair and unethical what lytic it could expect a fair shakefi at the judge has already prejudged the case before it
even enters the court room. i expect judge cavanaugh and it's my advice to him and all nominees that a nominee should offer quote no hints nor forecasts note per views and how they will answer i do not believe it would be appropriate for me to comment on the merits other than to say that it is a set law. entitled to presidential weight. and even the continued validity are issues likely to come before the court in the future. they were satisfied with these answers unprecedented so
senators should be satisfied if judge cavanaugh answer similarly. this is my 15th j supreme court hearing. they engaged in unprecedented smear campaigns. as mark said in an op dead opt the over the weekend working time special interest groups that they could demonize judicial nominees based solely on the worldview. they proved an effective tactic nearly sinking his appointment four years later. but he also said and continued to quote. by confirming judge cavanaugh the senate can go some way
towards a tonyo for the shameful treatment of justice robert work . touch cavanaugh as one of the most qualified nominees. a graduate of yale law school. including a man he nominated to replace. he spent all but three years of his career in public service and has served as a judge for 12 years on the dc circuit. the most influential circuit court. his one of the most impressive records for a lower court judge in the supreme court. in at least a dozen separate cases the supreme court adopted the position advanced theudge cavanaughes american bar association whose assessment and democratic leaders has called the gold standard judicial valuations
raises it unanimously well-qualified. a review of his extensive record demonstrates a deep commitment to the rule of kalaw. both judges and federal agencies are bound by the law congress and ask. and he has criticized those who substitute their own judgment about what a statute should should say for what it actually says. after the president nominates him. i said this will be a most trends -- transfer tearing. all of the discussion we had have this morning. it has proven to be from judge cavanaugh's authoring 307 opinions joined hundreds more amounting to more than 10,000 pages if submitted 3 submitted
17,000 pages of speeches and articles to the committee along with this 120 page written response to the questionnaire that they set out. this adds up to 27,000 pages for the records already available to the american people and we received just shy of a half a million pages of e-mails and other documents. it's more than we received for the last five supreme court nominees. everyone of these more than 483 pages of records are available to any senator 247. .. ..
american people have unprecedented access and more materialss for review of judge kavanaugh than ever has had for a supreme court nominee. and to support the review of judge kavanaugh's historic volume of material, i've worked to ensure that more senators have access to more material than ever. and so much of the rest of my statement has been discussed this morning but what the democrats have said, and i've answered a loted of it, i'm goig to put the last seven pages of my statement in the record and the guard asked senator feinstein if she has more to say on herer opening statement. and if she doesn't go to senator -- do you have something? >> i do, mr. chairman, i would
probably truncated even so. i think it's really important that people as well as the judge, the nominee, understand how strongly we feel and why we feel that way. i want to talk a little bit about what of the big decisions that we have the belief that although you told senator collins that you believed it was settled law, the question is really do you believe that it's correct law. that's roe v. wade. i was in the '50s and '60s active but first as a student at stanford. i saw what happened to young women who became pregnant, and then subsequently i sat as an appointee of governor brown on the term setting and rolling authority for women in
california who had committed felonies. and so i sentenced women who had committed abortions to state prison, and granted them paroles. and so came to see both sides, the terrible side and the human and vulnerable side. and when you look at the statistics during those days, though statistics at the institute has put out are really horrendous. for you, the president that nominated you, has said i will nominate someone who is anti-choice and pro-gun. and we believe what he said. we cannot find the documents that absolve from that conclusion. so what women have one through roe v. wade and a host of
privacy cases, to be able to control their own reproductive system, the basic privacy rights really, extraordinarily important to the site of the aisle. and hope the other side of the aisle as well. last year you drafted a distant in a case where a dead woman in texas i believe with seeking an abortion. in that dissent you argued that he was a young woman had complied with the texas parental notification law and secured an approval from the judge, she should nonetheless be barred. in making your argument you ignored and i believe mischaracterize the supreme court precedent. you recent that jane doe should not be unable to exercise her right to choose the tissue did not have family and friends to
make a decision. the argument rewrites supreme court precedent, and if adopted, we believe, would require courts to determine whether a young woman had a sufficient support network when making a decision. in cases where she has gone to court. this reason, we believe, i believe, demonstrates that you are willing to disregard precedent. and if that's the case because just saying something is settled law, it really is, is it correct law? the impact of overturning roe is much broader that a woman's right to choose. it's about protecting the most personal decisions we all make from government intrusion. roe is one in a series of cases that upheld and individuals
rightm to decide who to marry. it's not the governments rights. where to send your children to school. the government can't get involved. what kind of medical care you t can receive at the end of life, as well as whether and when to have a family. and i e deeply believe that all these cases serve as a bulwark of privacy rights that protect all americans from overinvolvement of the government in their lives. and to me that's extraordinarily important. next, i'd like to address the presidents promised to appoint a nominee blessed by the nra. in reviewing your judicial opinions and documents, it's pretty clear that your views go well beyond simply being pro-gun. pro-gun. and unlike to straighten that out. it's my understanding that during a lecture at notre dame
law school you said you would be quote, the first to acknowledge that most other lower judges, supreme court justice have disagreed with your views on the second amendment. for example, in district of columbia versus heller you wrote that in less guns were regulated either at the time the constitution was written or traditionally throughout history, they cannot be regulated now. in your own words, come laws are unconstitutional, unless they are, quote, traditional or common in the united states. you concluded that banning assault weapons is unconstitutional because they have not historically been banned. and this logic means that even as weapons become more advanced and more dangerous they cannot be regulated. judge easterbrook as you know, conservative judge from the
seventh circuit, concluded that reasoning was absurd and he pointed out that a lost existence can't be the source of its own constitutional validity -- laws. in in fact, i'm left with the ft that your reasoning is far outside the mainstream of legal thought, and that it surpasses the views of justice scalia who pro-gun justice. even scalia understood that weapons that are like m-16 rifles, or weapons that are most useful in military service can, in fact, be regulated. and there's's no question that assault weapons, like the ar-15, were specifically designed to be like the m-16. the united states makes up 4% of the worldwide population, but we own 42% of the world's guns.
since 2012 when 20 -first-graders and six school employees were killed at sandy hook elementary, there have been 273 school shootings. this is an average of five shootings every month, and a total of 462 children, teenagers, teachers and staff shot, and 152 killed. i care a lot about this. i authored the assault weapons legislation that became law for ten years, and i've seen the destruction. if the supreme court were to adopt your reasoning, i fear the number of victims would continue to grow, andon citizens would be rendered powerless in enacting
sensible gun laws. so this is a big part of my very honest concern. you were being nominated for a pivotal seat. likely be the deciding vote on on the mental issues. so during your time in the white house when you were staff secretary, some people regard it as kind of a monitor, moderating things going in and k out but i think it's much more. and you yourself have said that that's the time of my greatest growth. and so we tryat to look at it. the only way we can look at it is to understand the documents. and it's very, very difficult. i don't want to take too much time, but we've heard a lot of noise. behind the noise is really a
very sincere belief that it is so important to keep in this country, which is multiethnic, multireligious, multi-economic, a court that really serves the people, and served this great democracy. and that's my worry here that's my worry. so i look forward to your statement and answering the questions.'s thank you, mr. chairman. >> senator hatch for ten minutes. >> thank you, mr. chairman. i first want to thank you for your tremendous work in organizing this hearing. this has been the most thorough supreme court confirmation process that i have participated in. we received more than twice as many documents for judge kavanaugh as for any supreme court nominee in history. this is a big deal.
we have tens of thousands of pages of judge kavanaugh's opinions, speeches and other writings. this has been an exhaustive process, and i want to thank you for your leadership on it. now, to witness. judge kavanaugh, it's good to see you. i've knowntn you for a long tim. this is my 15th and final supreme court confirmation hearing. i participate in the confirmation of every current justice on the court. i participate in the confirmation of over half of all federal judges now serving in the federal system, or who have ever served in the federal system. i know a good nominee when i see one, and you are a great nominee. i don't think there's any question about it. for a long time i remember when you first came this committee. back in 2441st confirmation hearing.
i was the chairman of this committee at the time. to know you well. i was impressed by your intellect, your legal ability, and your integrity. all. of which were very much notable. and only 39, you knew more about the law than most lawyers have practiced for a long time. and you did an outstanding judge. have earned the respect of your colleagues. you have earned the respect of the supreme court as well. as you know the supreme court has adopted the position and your opinion no less than 13 times. that's something nobody can really argue against. you've authored landmark opinions on the separation of powers, administrative law, the national security. you served as a mentor to dozens
of clerks and hundreds of law students, male and female. some of whom did not share your philosophy. your student reviews are off the charts favorable, even by those who may not have completely agreed with your philosophical approaches. on some matters. you volunteer in your community. [shouting] >> mr. chairman, i asked for order. you volunteer in the community, coach youth basketball. you're the sort of person and of us would like to have as a friend and a colleague. you also apparently like to eat pasta with ketchup, but nobody is perfect. now, this being politics and this being a supreme court confirmation hearing -- [shouting] -- my democratic colleagues actually -- [shouting] >> i got a minute.
[shouting] >> my democratic colleagues can admit you are actually aot good judge and good person as well. they have to turn the volume up to 11 and try to paint you as one of the four horsemen of the apocalypse. anyone who knows you knows that's ridiculous to the american people will see soon enough that you are a smart, decent, normal person that just so happens to have been nominated to the highest court in our land. [shouting] so here are the facts. judge kavanaugh is one of the most distinguished judges -- mr. chairman, i think we ought to have this loudmouth removed. [shouting] >> we should not put up with this kind of stuff. [shouting] >> i hope she's not a law student. >> i -- now that we have quiet, i would like to explain that i advised two years ago that at my
hearings i expected the police to do their job, and i expect the committee to go on. but if you don't want to continue -- >> i'm going to continue. >> okay. go ahead. >> so here are the facts. judge kavanaugh is one of the most distinguished judges in the entire country. he has served for over 12 years now in use court of appeals for the d.c. circuit. the d.c. circuit is often referred to as -- [shouting] >> -- second highest court in the land because it appears may critically important cases -- [shouting] -- involving -- [shouting] during his time on the bench, judge kavanagh has servedd over 1000 cases. he's written more than 300 opinions. [shouting] >> is opinions spanned nearly 5000 pages in length. [shouting] >> what's remarkable about judge kavanaugh's judicial record is not just its link but it's depth
and its quality. [shouting] judge kevin has been a -- [shouting] >> is written powerful opinions on the separation of powers and administrative law. he showed he brings a a fair-minded approach to questions of criminal law and employment law. but almost every issue of consequence, judge kavanaugh has made a significant contribution to our nation's jurisprudence and he's one respect from both sides of theon political spectr. the committee has received letters from former clerks, former colleagues, former students and former classmates, all of testing to judge kavanaugh's sterling character and qualifications, some of whom are democrats. eminent members of the supreme court bar and legal academia have all written in some sort of judge kavanaugh's nomination. the authors of these letters emphasize that w there different political views and that they do not agree on every subject, but to a person they speak of judge
kavanaugh's integrity and judgment, and they enthusiastically endorse his nomination. i'd like to highlight one letter in particular from 18 of judge kavanaugh's former womenwo law clerks. that's all of this form of women clerks, all of them who were not precluded by their current or pending employment from signing the letter. they like that quote, judge kavanaugh has been one of the strongest advocates in the federal judiciary for women lawyers, unquote. a detailed the mentoring and encouragement judge kavanaugh has given them in their careers, and they say that it is quote, not an exaggeration to say that we would not be the professors, prosecutors, look officials and appellate advocates we are today without his enthusiastic encouragement and unwavering support, unquote. it bears emphasis that these former clerks spanned the
political divide. that shows you the high regard judge kavanaugh's across the ideological spectrum. republicans and democratic appointed judges alike have hired his former clerks judge kavanaugh is no ideologue. he is no extremist. he is a highly respected, thoughtful, fair-minded judge who is well within the judicial mainstream. look no further than the light of the committee received from over 40 members of the supreme court bar supporting judge kavanaugh's nomination. among the signers arers people like lisa blatt, deeann maynard and kathleen sullivan. these are nationally renowned attorneys who practice frequently before the supreme court and the federal courts of appeals, and they are not conservatives. to the contrary are among the most prominent liberal attorneys at the bar today and in the
country, but they know judge kavanaugh. they know his work. they know his character. they know that he is an outstanding judge and then of you make an outstanding justice, if we could just get the politics out of this i think we could all agree that judge kavanaugh is an indisputably qualified nominee with strong backing in the legal community who is well within the judicial mainstream. go ask anyone who practices regularly before the supreme court who doesn't have a partisan agenda and they will take judge kavanaugh is exactly the kind of person we should have on the court, or we should want on the court. indeed, no less than bob bennet, bill clinton's personal lawyer during clinton's presidency spoke to the committee urging support for judge kavanaugh's p nomination. here's what we come here's what he intended to say, oh, as a washington attorney i can attest to the highest h esteem to which the bar holdso judge kavanaugh.
lawyers love are doing before him, for good reason. because they know he will approach every case with an open mind, unquote. he continues quote, brett is the most qualified person any republican president could possibly have nominated. with the senate to fail to confirm brett, it would not only been passing at the opportunity to serve a great jurist but also undermine civility -- [shouting] >> just in playing politics such an obviously qualified candidate -- [shouting] -- lose the opportunity to put such a strong advocate for decency and civility on our nation's highest court, unquote. again, this is president clinton's personal lawyer during clinton's presidency who litigated against judge kavanaugh. those in know judge kavanaugh the highest regard this is true both republicans and democrats.
unfortunately, we have all these interest groups screaming from the sidelines and puttingng pressure on my democratic colleagues to make this hearing about politics, make it about pretty much anything except judge kavanaugh and his qualifications. we are folks who want to run for president, what the mom in the spotlight, what that constant tv clip. frankly i wish we could drop all the nonsense. judge kavanaugh is unquestionably qualified. he's one of the most widely respected judges in the country. he is well within the judicial mainstream. anyone who wants to argue otherwise once did and half the country from the mainstream. so judge, i'man glad you are hee today. i'm sorry you're going to have to -- nonsense that is not to your way but but i hope you do it well. you are smart -- [shouting] -- smart and y