Brett Kavanaugh makes US Supreme Court debut

Brett Kavanaugh makes US Supreme Court debut

Kavanaugh hears his first arguments from the bench today, having salted away the traditional duties of cafeteria supervision befitting the tradition for SCOTUS newbies.

Chief Justice John Roberts opened the hearing saying it was a "great pleasure" to welcome Kavanaugh. Only Samuel Alito and Stephen Breyer participated in a White House event after they had been sworn-in and begun work as a justice, according to the court's records on oath-taking by the current crop of justices.

178 years is what it took for a person of colour to join the court.

The newest justice's wife and two daughters were in seats reserved for justices' guests, along with retired Justice Anthony Kennedy. And my job doesn't have the gravity of a Supreme Court justice.

The cases before the justices on Tuesday were not blockbusters. United States, a case about whether a state robbery offense should be classified as a "violent felony" under the 1984 Armed Career Criminal Act, which is a criminal sentencing law that increases prison sentences after multiple violent felonies. Both men testified about their respect for Supreme Court precedent, though Gorsuch already has been in the majority to overrule four high-court rulings. At least one of the liberal justices declined to vote for cert in this case, and perhaps more than one.

Senate Democratic strategists tell TPM that their candidates in the deep-red states saw some overall degradation in their numbers around the time of Kavanaugh hearings, numbers that have been borne out by some other recent public surveys.

"He has played a double role in this historic moment", said former clerk Porter Wilkinson.

Every Justice seated in the past 30 years, including Kavanaugh, has received a law degree from Harvard, Columbia or Yale. Christine Blasey Ford had earlier spoken before the Senate Judiciary Committee, calling Kavanaugh as: "the boy who sexually assaulted me". It capped a fight that seized the national conversation after claims emerged that Kavanaugh had sexually assaulted women three decades ago.

After an extra Federal Bureau of Investigation probe - which media reports say was drastically curtailed by the White House - also found nothing new, Kavanaugh was finally voted into the coveted post. "The Supreme Court is a team of nine, and I will always be a team player".

The nation's reckoning with power and who to believe about sexual misconduct has generated a new anger factor among the electorate and made the November 6 balloting a referendum on more than President Donald Trump.

President Donald Trump took a prime-time victory lap on Monday night following the successful confirmation of Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh, proudly proclaiming that the man had been "proven innocent" after a "campaign of political and personal destruction based on lies and deception".

"Brett Kavanaugh may look the part when he dons the robe, but Kavanaugh will be an illegitimate justice for as long as he sits on the Court, " said Brian Fallon, executive director of a group called Demand Justice that opposes Kavanaugh. "It is not a partisan or political institution", he said.

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