Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) blasted Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley's defense of the release of documents regarding Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh during his confirmation hearing on Tuesday.

A number of Democrats objected to the committee receiving a batch of 42,000 documents relating to Kavanaugh's work with past administrations late on Monday.

Grassley's office said that more documents of executive branch material have been provided regarding Kavanaugh than of past nominees, something Leahy said was "laughable."

"It doesn't pass the giggle test," Leahy said.


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He added that in all, four percent of Kavanaugh's White House record has been shared with the committee.

"What is being hidden, and why?" Leahy asked.

He added that in the case of Kavanaugh's confirmation, the Senate is not being "the conscience of the nation."

“Today the Senate is not simply phoning in our vetting obligation,” he said. “We’re discarding it. It’s not only shameful, it’s a sham.”

In the days leading up to Tuesday's hearing, Democrats slammed the White House for withholding more than 100,000 pages of records related to Kavanaugh. The White House cited executive privilege for keeping some of the documents under wraps.

Kavanaugh was a former White House staffer and lawyer for Independent Counsel Kenneth Starr who currently sits on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit.

Leahy called Kavanaugh's hearing "premature," adding that the American public has many questions on how his confirmation could affect them.

“Any claim that this has been a thorough or transparent process is downright Orwellian,” he said. “This is the most incomplete, most partisan, least transparent vetting for any Supreme Court nominee I have ever seen. And I’ve seen more of those than any person serving in the Senate today.”

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