Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is threatening to hold Supreme Court Justice nominee Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation hearing just before the midterm elections if Democrats continue their extensive documents requests, according to a Friday Politico report.
Moving the timeline would both keep vulnerable incumbent Democrats off the campaign trail and, McConnell thinks, deliver a crushing blow to liberal morale just before the elections.
The Republicans’ plan was to have Kavanaugh confirmed by October 1 so he could start by the annual term. However, McConnell is reportedly getting increasingly irritated by what he sees as a Democratic attempt to push off the hearing until they have a shot at winning back the majority and blocking the confirmation.
Per Politico, Senate Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-IA) and the Democrats on the committee are deadlocked in negotiations over the document release.
“I would love to have him on the court the first day of the new term,” Grassley told Politico. “But I can’t even guarantee that at this point, because of the fact that we have a constitutional responsibility to do a thorough and fair hearing.”
Democrats maintain that they’re merely insisting on the same process that Justice Elena Kagan went through, when about 170,000 documents were released before her confirmation hearing. Republicans are accusing them of “historic obstruction.”