A look at highlights from day three of Brett Kavanaugh's confirmation hearing for the Supreme Court, including New Jersey Senator Cory Booker saying he would risk expulsion over the release of confidential documents regarding racial profiling.
In a 2002 Kavanaugh email released by Booker's office, Kavanaugh with the subject line "racial profiling" about internal White House discussions on whether airport security and other law enforcement should strive for a "race-neutral" system after 9/11. John Cornyn, R-Texas, that he could be expelled from the Senate if he released documents marked "confidential" to the Senate Judiciary Committee.
By the time he released the documents, Republicans said they had, in fact, been cleared for release.
"Running for president is no excuse for violating the rules of the Senate or of confidentiality of the documents that we are privy to", Cornyn said to Booker, who is considered a possible Democratic contender for president in 2020. The documents were made available after 3 a.m. Thursday, a few hours before the committee was gaveled into session. But because it had been deemed "committee confidential" after a review, Booker was not allowed to refer to it or ask Kavanaugh questions about it. Committee chairman Sen. It has resulted in hundreds of thousands of pages of Kavanaugh's documents being withheld as confidential or kept from release under presidential privilege by the Trump White House. Senator Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii) followed Booker's lead, tweeting screenshots of an email thread from Kavanaugh regarding Native Hawaiian rights.
Kavanaugh has repeatedly described the abortion ruling as important Supreme Court precedent hard to overturn.
The article contained a blanket statement about the abortion rights decision that Kavanaugh, who faced his third day of grilling at a confirmation hearing Thursday, took exception to.
Both abortion rights advocates and opponents place enormous stock in what potential justices say about "settled law" on the topic, as a barometer of whether they would vote to overturn the the privacy-based ruling that protects a woman's right to an abortion.
But Democrats refused the request on Wednesday as they upped their opposition to Kavanaugh, forcing Republicans to adjourn early.
After answering "with other judges I know", Kavanaugh was asked if he had discussed the probe with anyone who works at Kasowitz Benson Torres, the NY law firm founded by President Donald Trump's personal attorney Marc Kasowitz.
Kavanaugh stressed the importance of judicial independence and insisted he would not be 'swayed by political or public pressure, ' but declined to answer hypothetical questions on the limits of presidential pardons and whether a sitting president could be subpoenaed to testify. He went on to say, "This is about the closest I'll ever come in my life to an "I am Spartacus" moment".
Sen. Patty Murray of Washington says the emails "confirms our worst fears" about Kavanaugh.
"Have you had any conversation about Robert Mueller or his investigation with anyone at that firm?" she asked.
Kavanaugh eventually said he couldn't think of any such conversations but would need to see a list of the firm's lawyers. "I'm sure you can understand, sir, how it puts all of us in a very hard situation when it's not you.it's somebody you have to go - then go back to a person named Bill Burck to decide if some document - who is an associate, who is an associate and colleague of the nominee - to figure out which documents are going to be released".
Later, when Kavanaugh continued to stumble over response, Harris said, "I asked the question just a minute ago, I'm surprised you forgot".