House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler asked the National Archives Tuesday to provide his committee with records related to Justice Brett M. Kavanaugh’s time working in the White House for President George W. Bush.
The move gives House Democrats a chance to relitigate the partisan confirmation battle through the committee’s oversight efforts.
The New York Democrat said the Senate Judiciary Committee failed to review documents from Justice Kavanaugh’s time as a staff secretary in the White House from 2003 to 2006. Former Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Charles E. Grassley, Iowa Republican, had requested documents related to Justice Kavanaugh’s work in the White House Counsel’s office from 2001 to 2003.
“As a result of this process, the Senate Judiciary Committee received only a small fraction of Justice Kavanaugh’s White House record before voting on his nomination,” read Mr. Nadler’s letter to the National Archives and Records Administration.
He wants the archives to turn over all emails Justice Kavanaugh was copied on or blind copied on — including any attachments — while he served as staff secretary to the former president.
The chairman said the documents are necessary as members of his committee consider legislative efforts to promote ethics and transparency in the federal judiciary.
Rep. Doug Collins, the committee’s top Republican, said Mr. Nadler’s request was “harassment.”
“Judiciary Democrats failed in their attempt to relitigate the Mueller investigation, so now they’re pivoting to attack a sitting Supreme Court Justice by reinvestigating issues examined during his Senate confirmation,” the Georgia Republican said.
Senate Republicans had argued the White House documents were not related to Justice Kavanaugh’s judicial record and instead argued Democrats should review the more than 300 opinions Justice Kavanaugh wrote while serving as a federal appeals court judge for more than a decade.
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