Democrats Just Released Confidential Kavanaugh Documents

“We are in uncharted and unprecedented territory here…the process has broken down.”

Jacquelyn Martin/AP

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Senate Democrats kicked off the third day of Brett Kavanaugh’s Supreme Court confirmation hearing with fireworks on Thursday morning, threatening to release committee-confidential documents revealing Kavanaugh’s legal record. 

The threat came moments after the New York Times published leaked documents from Kavanaugh’s work in the Bush White House, some of which related to Roe v. Wade and racial profiling. In one previously undisclosed email included in the Times‘ report, Kavanaugh in 2003 challenged whether the landmark ruling was considered “settled law”—a statement that contradicts repeated testimony he made before the Senate Judiciary Committee this week on a woman’s right to an abortion.

In announcing Democrats’ intention to publicize the documents, Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.) said he understood that doing so would risk his removal from the Senate. He and other Democrats argued that the documents they hoped to release did not contain personal or classified information, nor had they agreed as a committee on what would be designated committee confidential. Instead, Democrats insisted that the public had a right to review the documents for a nominee’s lifetime appointment.

“If Sen. Cornyn believes that I violated Senate rules, I openly invite and accept the consequences of my team releasing that email right now,” Booker said. “And I’m releasing it to expose that number one, that the emails are being withheld from the public have nothing to do with national security, nothing to jeopardize the sanctity of those ideals that I hold dear.”

Cornyn, in turn, accused Booker of attempting a political stunt in his potential 2020 run for president. Watch part of the exchange:

Sen. Richard Blumenthal described his Republican colleagues’ attempts to keep the documents concealed as a “shame.”

Booker, along with Sen. Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii), later followed through and released documents related to Kavanaugh’s record.:

This is a breaking news post. We will continuously update as more information becomes available.

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THE TRUTH...

is the first thing despots go after. An unwavering commitment to it is probably what draws you to Mother Jones' journalism. And as we're seeing in the US and the world around, authoritarians seek to poison the discourse and the way we relate to each other because they can't stand people coming together around a shared sense of the truth—it's a huge threat to them.

Which is also a pretty great way to describe Mother Jones' mission: People coming together around the truth to hold power accountable.

And right now, we need to raise about $400,000 from our online readers over the next two months to hit our annual goal and make good on that mission. Read more about the information war we find ourselves in and how people-powered, independent reporting can and must rise to the challenge—and please support our team's truth-telling journalism with a donation if you can right now.

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