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The marathon event begins at 9:30 a.m. and will last into the night, with each member of the committee receiving 30 minutes to speak in the first round of questions. "That's a violation of judicial independence", he said.

"The Supreme Court must never be viewed as a partisan institution", Kavanaugh said.

In his opening statement, Kavanaugh vows to be a "pro-law judge" who will interpret the law impartially. Dianne Feinstein, a California Democrat, who introduced him at the hearing. "The voices heard at today's hearing are the noise of democracy", he said during the hearing, "and it's because we have before us a nominee to the highest court in the land whose record is being hidden from the public".

She said this "clunky choreography" was meant to fluster Republicans and, more importantly, mobilize the Democrats' left-wing base ahead of November's midterm elections. "Cancel Brett Kavanaugh!" Others shouted against the president or to protect abortion access.

"We can not possibly move forward, Mr. Chairman, with this hearing", she declared.

"We have not been given an opportunity to have a meaningful hearing on this nominee", said Sen.

Kavanaugh's hearing began less than 24 hours after the Senate had received 42,000 pages of documents from Kavanaugh's tenure, and three days after the White House asserted executive privilege and refused to release a hundred thousand documents.

Chuck Schumer and other Democrats reportedly considered staging a mass walkout during the confirmation hearing of Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, but feared such move would only give ammunition to Republicans. So far, there are no signs of Republican defections.

The hearing has strong political overtones ahead of the November election, but Democrats lack the votes to block Kavanaugh's confirmation. The confirmation hearings should therefore be halted so these issues can be explored and proper recusals agreed to after due deliberation, including full production of the judge's documents so his views can be thoroughly probed.

Some of the sessions have focused on making sure that he was comfortable "with people shouting him down" or being heckled by protesters.

"I'm concerned that he won't be that person", Guttenberg said. Democrats are requesting documents from Kavanaugh's time as former President George W. Bush's staff secretary. Republicans also have released some, but not all, documents concerning Kavanaugh's two prior years as a lawyer in Bush's White House Counsel's Office.

Bystanders and media outlets shared videos of the women being led away from the hearing in makeshift handcuffs.

"Of course the violence in the schools is something we all detest and want to do something about", Kavanaugh said.

The talking points from President Donald Trump's White House claimed that Parkland father Fred Guttenberg was prevented from shaking Kavanaugh's hand because security seperated them.

There is a long history of heated fights over US Supreme Court nominations, with anger in both parties. But the Democrat frustrations that boiled over on Tuesday had been simmering for more than two years.

The hearings surrounding President Trump's nominee to join the Supreme Court descended into chaos Tuesday morning, with liberal protesters chanting "vote no" as Congressional Democrats called for an indefinite postponement.

Grassley, who struggled to maintain order but remained patient, countered that Kavanaugh, 53, has made more documents available for review than the five previous Supreme Court nominees combined.

Trump jumped into the fray Tuesday, saying on Twitter that Democrats were "looking to inflict pain and embarrassment" on Kavanaugh.

When it was his turn, Kavanaugh told senators he would be "a neutral and impartial arbiter" if confirmed.


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