National Archives: We can't produce all Kavanaugh docs until end of October

Posted August 03, 2018

Senate Republicans have yet to schedule a confirmation hearing for Kavanaugh.

Republicans are calling Democrats' request for more documents a delay tactic, but the letter from the National Archives shows that Kavanaugh's confirmation may be delayed even without Democratic action. According to the Washington Post, President Bush has authorized making the Kavanaugh documents available, and a group of lawyers, led by Bush's presidential records representative, is reviewing them.

"In the end, the committee will have reviewed significantly more records than ever before for a Supreme Court nominee", touted the Judiciary aide.

Grassley says he will not ask the National Archives to release the documents from Kavanaugh's time as White House staff secretary because they are too sensitive.

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"As Chairman Grassley said this morning, he intends to hold a hearing sometime in September", said the aide.

Sen. Chuck Schumer objects that the Bush records team might withhold documents the Archives would be willing to produce. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, that they would not be able to deliver roughly 600,000 of the requested documents until late October, days before the midterms.

"We estimate that we can complete our review of the textual records and the subset of White House Counsel Office emails "from" Kavanaugh (approximately 49,000 emails)-totaling roughly 300,000 pages - by approximately August 20, 2018, and now expect to be able to complete the remaining 600,000 pages by the end of October 2018", National Archives general counsel Gary Stern wrote in the letter addressed to Grassley.

But a committee spokesman said Senate Republicans are still on track for September hearings because senators will be able to obtain the documents more expeditiously through a separate process directly involving the Bush Presidential Library. That is far more than than the 60,000 pages the Archives identified from the White House counsel's office, and the 170,000 emails he either received or sent or was copied on.

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Any delay could mean that Kavanaugh, if ultimately approved by the Republican-led Senate, could still miss the October 1 start of the Supreme Court's term and that the final confirmation vote could take place close to the November 6 US congressional elections.

"I really want to thank the Democrats who have stood up for Judge Kavanaugh", Hatch told reporters at a press conference on Thursday.

And even if one is concerned about this possibility, one solution would be to have the Archives folks review any documents the Bush team says should be withheld. "To be clear, President Bush has offered this as a courtesy to the Committee to assist in a timely assessment of Judge Kavanaugh's nomination".

Utah GOP Sen. Mike Lee argued that Kavanaugh's views were just "talking points" and "not the development of policy".

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