WASHINGTON, D.C. (CBSNewYork) – Senate confirmation hearings are set to start Tuesday for Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh.
Lawmakers on Capitol Hill are preparing for a fight, especially after the White House decided to withhold 100,000 pages of his records.
“It’s not normal,” Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) said in an interview.
Some of the unreleased records in question are from Kavanaugh’s time as a lawyer in former President George W. Bush’s administration.
“The assertion of executive privilege by the White House to take 100,000 documents and say the American people will not get a chance to see them as they reflect on Kavanaugh’s background is the first time in history. This denial of access to documents violates a rule that we thought was a tradition of the Senate,” said Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.).
The chairman of the Judiciary Committee, Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), released a statement supporting the decision to hold some records. He also provided numbers of how many Kavanaugh-related documents have been turned over – more than 400,000, the most of recent Supreme Court nominees.
“Democrats have more than enough information to understand that this is a highly qualified jurist that should be the next Supreme Court justice,” he said.
Republicans are hopeful Kavanaugh will win over bipartisan support. say Kavanaugh is one of the most qualified nominees in a generation.
“If he does well at the hearing, he will get — my belief is — 55 or higher,” said Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-Ky.). “I think there are a handful of Democrats who will vote for Judge Kavanaugh if he does well, maybe even more.”
Democrats are expected to press Kavanaugh on topics like abortion, interrogation and special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation.