- Democrats motioned to adjourn Brett Kavanaugh’s Supreme Court confirmation hearing within seconds of its start Tuesday.
- Protesters swarmed the room to oppose Kavanaugh as President Donald Trump’s nominee to fill the Supreme Court vacancy.
- The committee continued with the hearing, with Chairman Chuck Grassley insisting everything would go on as planned.
Senate Democrats moved to adjourn Judge Brett Kavanaugh’s first confirmation hearing for his nomination to serve on the Supreme Court on Tuesday seconds after the Judiciary Committee panel began.
The moment Senate Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley began his opening remarks, Sen. Kamala Harris, a California Democrat, interrupted to take issue with lawmakers’ access to documents from Kavanaugh’s tenure as a staffer in the George W. Bush White House.
When Grassley did not allow it, Sen. Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut called the hearing “a charade and a mockery of our norms” while motioning to adjourn the hearing as protesters opposing Kavanaugh erupted in applause and chants.
Sen. Cory Booker of New Jersey then began asking for postponement while Grassley banged his chairman’s gavel and called for regular order.
“What is the rush? What are we trying to hide by not having the documents out front?” Booker asked. “What is with the rush? What are we not hiding by not letting those documents come out? Sir, this committee is a violation of the values that we as a committee have striven for.”
But Grassley would not have any of it, instead insisting the hearing would continue as planned.
“Maybe it isn’t going exactly the way the minority would like to have it go, but we have said for a long period of time that we were going to proceed on this very day,” Grassley said. “And I think we ought to give the American people the opportunity to hear whether Judge Kavanaugh should be on the Supreme Court or not.”
While Grassley was pleading for regular order, a protester began screaming loudly in the hearing room. Sen. Orrin Hatch, the most senior Republican senator, could be overheard on camera saying, “Get her thrown out of here, my God.”
Eventually, the fight among senators calmed down and Grassley proceeded with his opening remarks.