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Republicans also previous year reduced the margin for advancing Supreme Court nominations from 60 votes in the 100-seat Senate to a simple majority in order to force through the confirmation of Trump's first high court nominee, Neil Gorsuch. But with Trump's fellow Republicans holding a slim majority in the Senate, and with no sign of any of them voting against the nomination, it remains likely Kavanaugh will be confirmed to the lifetime job on top U.S. judicial body.

But Kavanaugh dodged Democratic Senator Dianne Feinstein's question about whether a sitting president can "be required to respond to a subpoena", a query that could come into play as Special Counsel Robert Mueller investigates potential collusion between Trump's 2016 presidential campaign and Russian Federation.

After Bush moved into the White House in 2001, he recruited Kavanaugh as legal counsel before later naming him to the appellate court in 2003.

"No senator deserves to sit on this committee or serve in the Senate, in my view, if they decide to be a law unto themselves and willingly flout the rules of the Senate and the determination of confidentiality and classification". The document is partially redacted.

While Judge Kavanaugh reportedly said he considers Roe "settled law", Ms. Feinstein asks whether it is "correct law". But Booker released the messages anyway, arguing they're not "national security-related". Booker disagreed, referring to "this process as a bit of a sham". He was chastised by GOP colleagues for having discussed a confidential document about Kavanaugh's legal views on race. He called Booker's actions "irresponsible and conduct unbecoming a senator".

But Booker says he can't share the email with the nominee because it is among those that have been labelled "committee confidential" - available to senators, but not the public.

"My process was fair", Grassley said as he opened the session.

The email was first given to the New York Times and has since been made public by the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Members of the committee will have 30 minutes each to question Kavanaugh on a variety of issues and on his record as a federal judge. "I did not take any constitutional position on the issues you're raising", Kavanaugh said.

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Kavanaugh also said in response to pointed questions by Democratic Sen. The firm in question was founded by Marc Kasowitz, who has represented Trump. Harris said he doesn't need to see a list to recall whether he's talked to anyone at the firm in the 15 months since Mueller's probe was launched.

Protesters have repeatedly tried to interrupt the hearing, which has carried strong political overtones ahead of the November congressional elections.

The nomination hearings are expected to last several more days, during which Democrats will likely try to portray Kavanaugh as someone too tied to Trump and who will push a conservative agenda on the high court.

Booker says the email's subject is racial profiling and he wants it released publicly. "She also designed costumes for the television shows "Westworld", Masters of Sex" and "Pan Am", and says the fact that women are using her creations in protest is a huge honor. Still, he began his long day in the witness chair by declaring that "no one is above the law".

Abortion rights supporters fear - and those opposed to abortion are optimistic - that Kavanaugh could help form a majority to either overturn Roe or approve more restrictions on abortions.

Bernie Sanders speaks with protesters in front of the Supreme Court.

The third day of the confirmation hearing continues Thursday at 9:30 a.m. "And one of the important things to keep in mind about Roe v. Wade is that it has been reaffirmed many times over the past 45 years". Kavanaugh would have denied her immediate access to an abortion, even after she received permission from a Texas judge.

"Bring the charges", the New Jersey senator demanded.


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