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Democrats walk out of Senate hearing in protest of Kavanaugh

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Senate Judiciary Committee member Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif., joined by from left, Sen. Mazie Hirono, D-Hawaii, Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., and Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee, D-Texas.
Senate
Judiciary Committee member Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif., joined
by from left, Sen. Mazie Hirono, D-Hawaii, Sen. Richard
Blumenthal, D-Conn., and Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee,
D-Texas

Carolyn
Kaster/AP


  • A handful of Democratic senators walked out of the Judiciary
    Committee’s hearing on Friday morning in protest of the vote on
    Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh.
  • “My answer is no, no, no,” Sen. Mazie Hirono of Hawaii said
    as she left the room.
  • The 21-person panel is expected to approve Kavanaugh’s
    nomination — the next step toward full Senate confirmation — at
    1:30 pm on Friday.

Four Democratic senators walked out of the Judiciary Committee’s
hearing on Friday morning while committee chairman Chuck Grassley
delivered his opening statement praising Supreme Court nominee
Brett Kavanaugh. 

Democratic Sens. Kamala Harris of California, Mazie Hirono of
Hawaii, Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut, Sheldon Whitehouse of
Rhode Island, and Patrick Leahy of Vermont held a press
conference in the hallway outside the committee room.

Harris remained silent during the committee’s roll call, while
others spoke out. 

“I strongly object. This is just totally ridiculous. What a
railroad job. My answer is no, no, no,” Hirono said as she left
the room.

The 21-person panel is expected to approve Kavanaugh’s nomination
— sending him to a cloture vote on Saturday — at 1:30 pm on
Friday. Sen. Jeff Flake — the only Republican on the committee
who had signaled he could break with his party — announced on
Friday morning that he would support the nominee, who has been
accused of sexual misconduct.

Blumenthal condemned his Republican colleagues at the press
conference, arguing that they were doing their best to ignore and
divert attention away from the “undeniably credible” sexual
assault allegations against the judge. 

“Talking about coordination, what we saw yesterday was a
coordinated effort to change the conversation away from the
brave, courageous survivor of sexual assault because her story
was so intensely, undeniably credible, to a partisan attack,”
Blumenthal said, referring to Christine Blasey Ford’s Thursday
testimony.  

Meanwhile, in the Senate hearing, Sen. Dianne Feinstein, the
top Democrat on the Senate Judiciary Committee,
excoriated Kavanaugh
for what she described as his
“aggressive and belligerent” behavior during his Thursday
testimony.

“Candidly, in the 25 years on this committee, I have never seen a
nominee for any position behave in that manner,” Feinstein
said. “This was not someone who reflected an impartial
temperament or the fairness and even-handedness one would see in
a judge.”

Liberal activists encouraged the senators to walk out. 

 

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