‘Beyond The Pale’: Booker Rips GOPers Who Hectored Jackson During Confirmation Hearings

WASHINGTON, DC - MARCH 21: Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ) delivers remarks during the Senate Judiciary Committee confirmation hearing for U.S. Supreme Court nominee Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson, in the Hart Senate Office Bui... WASHINGTON, DC - MARCH 21: Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ) delivers remarks during the Senate Judiciary Committee confirmation hearing for U.S. Supreme Court nominee Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson, in the Hart Senate Office Building on Capitol Hill March 21, 2022 in Washington, DC. Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson, President Joe Biden's pick to replace retiring Justice Stephen Breyer on the U.S. Supreme Court, will begin four days of nomination hearings before the Senate Judiciary Committee. If confirmed by the Senate, Judge Jackson would become the first Black woman to serve on the Supreme Court. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images) MORE LESS

Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ), who serves on the Senate Judiciary Committee, on Sunday took aim at Republican senators who hectored Supreme Court nominee Ketanji Brown Jackson during her confirmation hearings last week.

“What we saw though this week was to me outrageous and beyond the pale, and very different than what I’ve witnessed in my short time in the Senate seeing three different confirmation hearings,” Booker said during an appearance on MSNBC’s “Meet the Press.” “What some of my colleagues did was just sad, frankly.”

Booker added that “despite the outrageousness of the questioning” from Republicans, Jackson dealt with it in an “extraordinary way” that showed the country who she is.

During Jackson’s confirmation hearings last week, four Republican senators — Sens. Ted Cruz (R-TX), Josh Hawley (R-MO), Tom Cotton (R-AR) and Lindsey Graham (R-SC) — hectored Jackson on her record of sentencing people in possession of child pornography with raised voices and constant interruptions. In their theatrical performances during Jackson’s confirmation hearings, GOP senators launched into repetitive and graphic descriptions of Jackson’s cases in an effort to cast her as unacceptably lenient with those in possession of child pornography. Republicans’ arguments against Jackson have been debunked by nearly every large news outlet, however.

On the third day of Jackson’s confirmation hearings last week, Booker gave an impassioned speech that brought the Supreme Court nominee to tears. After praising Jackson for her historic nomination to become the first Black woman on the nation’s highest court, Booker tore into Republicans’ harsh line of questioning against her.

“It’s hard for me not to look at you and not see my mom, not to see my cousins — one of them who had to come here and sit behind you,” Booker said during Jackson’s third day of confirmation hearings last week. “She had to have your back. I see my ancestors and yours.”

“Nobody’s gonna steal that joy. Nobody’s taking this away from me,” Booker continued.

On Friday, Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) announced that he intends to vote for Jackson, all but ensuring her confirmation to the Supreme Court. Manchin’s stated support for Jackson followed efforts by right-wingers who tried to sway Manchin with their debunked-line of attack about her record of sentencing sex offenders.

Manchin praised Jackson, who withstood Republicans’ attacks calmly, for her “temperament” as a factor that makes her an “exceptional jurist.”

Watch Booker’s remarks below:

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