Skip to main content

tv   Senate Judiciary Committee Members on Supreme Court Nominee Kavanaugh  CSPAN  August 16, 2018 2:37pm-3:20pm EDT

2:37 pm
and see thatoday, the most important play on broadway now and for the past is a play that lionize is a play that lionize his alexander hamilton and vilifies jefferson and doors and see the amount distribution of wealth in the united states, and the amount of money in american politics today, they would see and fear that many of these things that are going on in the united states today bore an uncanny resemblance to the england they had revolted against. >> sunday night at 8:00 eastern on c-span's q&a. >> the senate judiciary committee met this morning to discuss a decision by the chairman to limit access to the writings and other records of
2:38 pm
supreme court nominee brett kavanaugh. democrats on the committee want to see all of the records from his time working in the george w. bush white house. this meeting from the judiciary committee is 40 minutes. >> before we turn to today's his agenda, i would like to briefly speak on the supreme court nomination. i mentioned last week that judge kavanaugh's confirmation hearing will begin september 4. senators will have had by then 57 days between the announcement of judge kavanaugh's nomination, and the start of the hearing. this is a longer time than we had four justices kagan and gorsuch. is how, this is
2:39 pm
example thatother this is the most transparent confirmation process of all time . in the 12 years on the d c circuit, judge kavanaugh-ish -- kavanaugh issued and hundreds more. as senator schumer and way he at the justice's confirmation hearing, in nominee's judicial record is the best way to evaluate a nominee. also submitted more than 17,000 pages with his bipartisan judicial committee questionnaire, and that happens to be the most robust questionnaire given to a nominee. received to enter 50,000 pages of documents from judge kavanaugh's service in the executive branch.
2:40 pm
than anylready more previous supreme court nominee, with many more documents yet to come. most already publicly available and we are working to make the vast majority of them publicly available as quickly as possible. we had plenty of time to review all of these materials before the hearing. has already staff reviewed nearly 80% of them. have triedly, some to criticize what is the most transparent confirmation process. think they're failing, they are failing because democratic leaders have made their true global -- their true goal obvious. confirmation as long as possible in hopes the senate would flip in the midterm elections.
2:41 pm
have tried to unsuccessfully apply the rule that bars confirmation during presidential election years. which they use to say they did not even exist to midterm elections and when that fell flat, they generated a controversy in a desperate attempt to delay the confirmation. lest there be any doubt, we're following justin kate -- justice kagan's nomination. we are requesting a significant number of judge kavanaugh's documents from this time in the executive branch. for sides agreed not to ask documents from justice kagan's time in the solicitor general's office because of their sensitivity. likewise, we are not asking for judge kavanaugh's documents as secretary.
2:42 pm
these documents are more sensitive because they obtain -- contain advice to the president and are at the heart of these activities. some say we need the documents because the judge stated in his time as secretary that those times were formative for him. justice kagan described her time as solicitor general as indicative as how she would serve as a justice. hertill did not ask for solicitor general papers and we will not ask for judge kavanaugh's secretary papers. some of my colleagues have forgotten that we had a more compelling need for justice kagan's. -- document because she had no judicial record, she had issued a zero opinions, and joined zero opinions at the time she was nominated. judge kavanaugh, by contrast, andissued over 300 opinions
2:43 pm
joined hundreds more in the 12 years on the bench. compellinging a less need for them, the senate will still receive hundreds of thousands more pages of documents from judge kavanaugh's time as a government lawyer than we did from justice kagan. there have been some criticisms in the way with which this review is being handled. these are groundless. first of all, the national archives are not being cut out of the process. the president is legally authorized to review these administration documents and decide which ones to release to the senate and claim that others are privileged. that is exactly what his team is doing now. additionally, some have labeled -- and he is all leading attorney in the review of president bush's documents as
2:44 pm
a partisan lawyer. from what i have found out from other people, he is a partner in one of the most lawful friends in the country and is one of president bush's presidential records act representatives since president bush left the white house in 2009. mr. burke handled the initial 'sview of justice gorsuch documents and there were no complaints about his doing that beingjustice gorsuch considered by the committee. i do not recall complaints of , documents.yer's director ofnal president clinton's enactment to a person who helped fix things for the white house
2:45 pm
and longtime ceo of the clinton foundation review justice kagan's documents. leslie kiernan, also prominent in democratic party politics, review justice sotomayor's documents before the senate received them. individuals could review nominees documents, before producing them to the senate, i think it is perfectly legitimate for mr. burke to do that as well. so i do not see rationale behind the criticism. the following nominees will be held over. nelson, ninth circuit, richard sullivan, second serve -- second circuit, gary brown, east district of new york, to the eastern,
2:46 pm
district, new york, eastern district of new york, rachel eastern district of new york, lewis, southern district, new york, john o'connor, northeastern and western districts of oklahoma. johnson a truck, western district of new york, and mary. southern district of new york. josh, eastern district of james carroll,nd director of national drug policy. we do not have enough to do that at this time. they will be held over and we will reach that later on. consider 2961, victims of child abuse act
2:47 pm
reauthorization. that is on the agenda for the first time. the bill extends a program last authorized in 2013, which makes federal resources available for more than 850 children's advocacy centers across the country. these rely on multidisciplinary teams here to do forensic interviews of child abuse victims. senator blunt introduces a sponsor along with senators kunz, carmen, also. it is now time for senator feinstein and other members to speak. senator feinstein. >> thanks very much, mr. chairman. to your words with interest because i know you have a difference of opinion on the subject. the judge kavanaugh's nomination
2:48 pm
been scheduled for september 4 and that is 19 days away. i want to say a few words about why the documents from his time in the white house should be publicly available in time for the hearing. the long-standing practice of the committee in the senate is to ensure as much transparency as possible. and to ensure that the senate and the american people have access to a nominee's full record. kagan.tioned let me use her as an example. 99% of her white house record was provided to the committee and to the public prior to the hearing. those documents were reviewed and produced in the committee by the national archives and followed the requirements of the presidential records act. that practice appears not to be followed here.
2:49 pm
stat, under an agreement with a lawyer representing former president bush, as you pointed out, the committee has received roughly 174,000 pages from judge kavanaugh's tenure in the white house as a last evening. apparently, at 11:20, another 60,000 pages arrived last evening. this is just a small fraction. 19%, of the request for judge kavanaugh's white house counsel documents. it is an even smaller fraction, about 2% of his total white house record. isably, what we now have about the same number of pages for brett kavanaugh as we have for atlantic -- elena kagan. that will be changed as you pointed out. but right now, that number
2:50 pm
represents 99% of the record in the white house, but represents only 2% of kavanaugh's white house record. my staff has been pouring over these nearly completed its review. of the documents are useful in assessing judge kavanaugh's to the for a lifetime supreme court. but it further confirms the need to obtain the full record to adequately assess the nominee and have these document publicly avail before the hearing. as committee confidential. the irony is, there is no rule that defines what this means. but as of now, you have said only committee members and staff currently have access to these documents. my question for you mr. chairman tocan we use these documents
2:51 pm
question mr. cavanaugh at the hearing? decision confirmation is to seek -- secret documents not available to the public or senate, is extremely troubling. i anticipated 10 supreme court nominations. i would like to take the opportunity to ask the chairman respectfully to ensure that the records are released before the hearing. in the same manner that has been done for previous supreme court's nominations. it may seem trivial to debate how many pages we can or cannot review or what is public and what is not public, but withholding even a small number could prevent key facts from being known. sos is true because there is
2:52 pm
much at stake in this nomination. if confirmed, brett kavanaugh would be the deciding vote on cases involving individuals liberty, andvacy, economy in the most personal aspects of their lives. the fundamental rights guarantee that parents and not the state can direct the upbringing and education of their children that women can make their own reproductive choices and that all can marry whom they love and carry out medical thesion-making without state. this nominee will also be the aboutng vote in cases whether federal agencies have the authority to curb climate change, protect consumers, safeguard workers rights, and let's not forget that judge kavanaugh would be the deciding vote in cases about voting rights and affirmative action.
2:53 pm
these are incredibly important issues for all americans. they define who we are as a nation and the extent of the freedoms that we all challenge on -- face under our constitution and laws. we have a constitutional duty to provided vice and consent on this nominee which requires a and vetting of his record transparency and accountability to the american people. trump -- fair man, mr. mr. chairman. i know our letters showed disagreement but i'm hopeful that you can work to find a way that key documents can be made available to the public before these hearings. we need to live up to the promise to provide an open and transparent and fair promise -- process. the american people deserve no less. answer -- records are
2:54 pm
and i will expand on that by reading here. on toe for documents commit -- basis. the documents did we receive may material including cox read it -- confidential vice given to the president as well as per from -- personal bankmation, numbers and account numbers. a secular -- a second review is restricts from public access. authorizes the committee to release documents and we put them on the committee website as quickly as we can. can --ontain restrictive
2:55 pm
material, keeps them on a confidential basis to enjoy the presidential review act, records act, requires to be kept public and does not become public. this is consistent with our practice in the gorsuch nominations where he received a presidential record act, restricting material on a confidential basis. if we agree not to receive some presidential records act restrictive materials at all, in other words, they didn't even come to the committee. when he explained his decision on a confirmation basis, they said he did so to permit prompt access to them, i simply don't understand any complaints about
2:56 pm
getting records here quickly. you cannot simultaneously complain about not needing more to review documents while also complaining we are getting documents are too slowly. to make as many documents as publicly available as quickly as possible. the following documents are already public. joined in on over 17,000 paces and materials. over 125,000 paces of executive -- branch, we will have more of these soon and we are
2:57 pm
receiving them quite regularly as you stated, but 11:00 last leal rolling bass. who else wants to speak. go ahead. >> i have listened to the statement with black before you speak, i want to ask unanimous consent since we don't have the proper number of people here for chairman leahy to speak, and i do not hear any objections, so proceed. you.leahy: thank the senator from iowa and i have beengood friends must've listening to his recitation of history. , i remembera child enjoying reading alice in
2:58 pm
wonderland. alice and wonderland. are so many things wrong with the gingery committee'vetting of judge kavanaugh. really had to know where to begin. the white house is well aware the presidents like him nonetheless. the full record is not some to,onal thing deciding depending upon who the president
2:59 pm
might be, it should be a duty of advice andstates consent cause. to set the record straight compared to things said, why i time, i worked with jeff sessions to request the full universe of justice kagan's documents bill clinton presidential library. we receive 99% of them. to everybody,able republicans and democrats alike, on this committee. similarly, for justice -- sessions andtor request records working with civil rights organization in the 1980's.
3:00 pm
for a civil rights organization in the 1980's, republicans want to see that record. i say ok, fine. that was despite the fact that they -- she had if it more than 3000 opinions over seven years in the district court judge. i did say those opinions were worth looking at. we also think because republicans wanted all of the background. i said of course, this up in court nomination. it would appear to be blatantly partisan. wouldn't be the same from judge kavanaugh. no executive privilege, and no hiding. the american people deserve
3:01 pm
death for public is rightly demanded president of alma's nominees. it does not make any difference whether they are republican or democrat nominees. you should have all the facts. but, every up -- every republican applauded at the time these efforts. we had this bipartisan openness and join for all the records when republicans applauded at the time, now they have a different view. trackmmittee is not on with partisan standard of transparency. just weeks ago, some of my republican friends expressed a willingness to express white house documents that the judge kavanaugh author -- white house secretary.
3:02 pm
i applaud that. whips, and probably one of the fastest turns i've ever seen outside of a racetrack, that abruptly changed after a private house --ith the white on house -- on giants -- july 24. same republicans thought it was great to have these records -- that was a few minutes ago and this is now. suddenly, all of the judge kavanaugh's records were off-limits, even those he authored. secretary going in, we are off the table and coming out. what was the quiet conversation
3:03 pm
-- every single record. staff secretary over one million. theanaugh him self most formative judge. any issue that may cross the president's desk. it is bad enough and the story gets even worse. every nomination for watergate, the white house record nominee, providing to the senate judiciary committee as required by statute. something that began because of what we learned in watergate.
3:04 pm
president and the committee for the first time processis nonpartisan and save for the first time since watergate, we put back in a partisan process. a limited record the chairman has requested, national archives have stated, it is only completed a third of its review before the confirmation hearing, meaning two thirds would not be completed until october. so we're saying let's have the and as, let's discuss always, have the hearing now and have them after the hearing. trialg a person to the
3:05 pm
commentary on sad this committee. i am honored to serve on this committee for 40 years. and here we go -- we have a process in watergate. to make sure you have everything. we are we must accept a , handpickingyer what documents are sent, and thus, the american people get to see. definition, the process is hope -- hopelessly conflicted. you wouldn't even be able to sell a story line for something like this. for a movie or a television or a play, because it is too preposterous.
3:06 pm
at the lawyer choosing what we will see. bannon,represents steve and counselor, mcgann in the russian investigation. one time, he pointed directly to judge kavanaugh on the white house. lawyer is not even obligated to tell us what he is withholding and why. there is no requirement for privileged lot. is so extraordinary that the national archives released a statement yesterday. in nearly 24 years, i've never seen a statement like this. ask andonal archives makes it clear that nothing to do with documents currently being supplied through the committee.
3:07 pm
it is unprecedented. i would note the website maintained by the majority addressing this concern. with covered those are misleading facts. against interference. if you are allowed to do the job, it might be true. given the chairman's hearing date, that statement is false. it is totally false. itsarchive will conclude confirmationhs vote we will have the conclusion and then we will hear the evidence. interferencertisan occurs and month after the vote or no check at all.
3:08 pm
it really does not pass the giggle test. it is amazing. i've said here long time, he used respect for republicans and democrats i served with. but i can't think of any time we have seen something like this. anything like of this in three agitated or 390 senators have had the privilege to serve with. i do not approach this conclusion lightly. woods lastnd the week in vermont, thinking about this. i came to this conclusion. most the most incomplete partisan and least transparent
3:09 pm
vetting for any supreme court nominee i've ever seen. i have been here as a recent supreme court nominee since john paul. i voted for most of them including chief justice. what was truthful about it is -- the last time in the senate. he provided an account of his work at the bush white house. account -- the only way we're going to know the whole truth is with a full record. justice kagan and the chair of the committee by the time i
3:10 pm
joined him on that. the americanat people rightly deserve from judge kavanaugh. there is still time to get this right. thaty mean a consideration judge kavanaugh does not occur in september. maybe a few weeks later but no need to rush. no extraordinary circumstances here that preclude the senate. they are paid to do what they are elected to do. it does not confuse this record with -- record.
3:11 pm
some responsibilities of the senate is routine. extraordinary -- extraordinarily important. the thing that is more important than responsibility is how we vote on a lifetime employment to the supreme court. restore -- an important responsibility. i think we ought to demonstrate to the american people that we are willing to carry out our responsibility. that is passed in a bipartisan way. have all of the facts out here. then they can vote the way she wants. provided they have all of the facts when they vote. in a time in the american public
3:12 pm
raises questions about what is happening in washington wouldn't it be nice for the american people to actually know what is weind the decision we make can do that. it may take an extra week or two. some serve longer than others. i think i know he is thinking. some might have to be elected. let's just get it right. thank you. though we are one short of how much it needs, i would like to respond. i hope people will.
3:13 pm
i hope they will hear me out. i don't feel, using the alice in , we have seven people here now. i do not have to ask unanimous consent. anyway, i don't feel comfortable using his alice in wonderland i would but if i were, start with the fact that the committee did not receive 99% of justice kagan's records. get her solicitor general records and we also did not get 66,000 emails that mention her name to with judge kavanaugh, we have a 12 year record of his judicial work. we also have received up to one million pages of his records but ignoring the one million pages,
3:14 pm
i couldn't at this time quote senator leahy at the time of judge sought a myers quote. we have the judge's record from the federal bench. that is a public record or do have even before she was designated by the president, the judge's mainstay -- mainstream record of judicial restraint and modesty is the best syndication of her judicial philosophy. we do not have to imagine what kind of a judge she will be because we see what kind of a judge she has been. so it seems to me it is pretty clear that we have an equal ofunt of evidence to look at judge kavanaugh's qualifications for being on the supreme court, and the amount of documents that we are going to have for judge least five times
3:15 pm
the number of records we have and thenustice kagan we will get -- in other words, we going to get five times as much for judge kavanaugh as we got for justice kagan. up to something we think is more than the records for five previous supreme court justices. combined. anybody saying and a veryve records good basis for hearing and judge kavanaugh is all about being on the supreme
3:16 pm
court and i will end with this. unsubstantiated questions about the adequacy of judge kavanaugh's testimony in 2006, do not require the productions of millions of pages from his position as white house staff, secretary. then, terminally he refuses, referred these allegations to the department of justice. the pug with integrity session determined there was not a sufficient basis to open up the criminal investigation. the governing detention must be read in the context of questioning at his nomination here. abusive treatment of detainees,
3:17 pm
the judge did not -- was not involved in the policies. interrogation policies were highly compartmentalized in the white house, and judge kavanaugh was never authorized to know about them. in any event, the allegations are based on judge kavanaugh's time in the white house thesel's office and committee has already requested documents from that time. anybody --e >> mr. chairman, following our sayal procedure, you did what percentage you got, but the fact is, senator sessions, questioning the records from the clinton library, on now justice kagan, we did get 99% of them. fact.s a
3:18 pm
it is 99 percent. >> ok. meeting adjourned.
3:19 pm
>> a chairman testified today before the senate commerce committee and had an exchange with why senator.


info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on