Senate Democrats to meet with Kavanaugh amid documents fight

A look at Supreme Court Justice nominee Brett Kavanaugh

Republicans downplayed the National Archives' announcement, in part because of the separate ongoing Bush review, with a spokesman for Senate Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley signaling the committee still plans to hold confirmation hearings in September. "In the end, the committee will have reviewed significantly more records than ever before for a Supreme Court nominee", Foy said.

Some Democrats say they are concerned that Kavanaugh will not keep President Trump in check.

"In the past, I think 170,00 or 180,000 pages was considered by Sen".

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. Chris Coons of DE said at a hearing Wednesday that the Senate should receive even more documents than what Grassley had requested.

Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer said Democrats also object to the Bush library, rather than nonpartisan archives officials, vetting the documents. Additional coverage comes from Igor Bobic at Huffpost and from Li Zhou at Vox, who reports that "Grassley's recent request centered predominantly on Kavanaugh's time as counsel during the Bush White House and did not even include the trove of documents Democrats have been pressing for from his time as staff secretary". He further complained about what he called "dumbass" partisanship over Kavanaugh's nomination. A source involved in the review process told CNN that the law requires the former president to be consulted about which records can be disclosed - and said the Bush team is working with law firms to turn over the documents simply so the Senate can get them expeditiously.

National Archives General Counsel Gary Stern said in a letter to Republican Senator Chuck Grassley, chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee that will hold confirmation hearings, that although some records could be produced earlier, a complete review would be completed "by the end of October".

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.

Republicans have been hesitant to request those records, however, and have accused Democrats of engaging in stalling tactics. At Politico, Elana Schor and Burgess Everett report that Senate Republicans are nonetheless "pressing ahead on confirming ..." What is clear, however, is that if Republicans do find a pretext for ramming Kavanaugh's confirmation through before the midterm elections, they would likely have to do so with incomplete information about his past.

"Those are documents that presumably our colleagues have looked at, but they haven't found much in it to build a case against the nominee so now they've chose to take it down a different path, which I believe is more of a stall tactic than anything else", said Tillis.

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