Democrats on Tuesday called for a delay in the Supreme Court confirmation hearings of Brett Kavanaugh, objecting to the late release of documents the evening before.
Sen. Kamala Harris of California began a round of Democratic objections as Judiciary Committee Chairman Sen. Chuck Grassley tried to open the hearings Tuesday morning. Harris said that Democrats received approximately 40,000 documents that they have not had time to review. Sen. Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut also objected, as did Sen. Mazie Hirono of Hawaii.
Sen. Cory Booker of New Jersey said, "We are rushing through this process in a way that is unnecessary."
Grassley responded: "You are taking advantage of my decency and integrity."
Protesters also interrupted the hearing. One shouted, "an illegitimate president cannot make a lifetime appointment to the Supreme Court." Another shouted, this is a "mockery and travesty of justice."
Outside the hearing, women dressed in "Handmaid's Tale" costumes stood in the halls to protests Kavanaugh's stance on women's rights.
Kavanaugh sat silently, occasionally sipping water and taking notes on senators' points. He was invited to introduce his parents, wife and children, who sat through much of the outbursts before being escorted out of the room
In the end, the protests prolonged the start of the actual hearing by about an hour.
But Grassley was able to finally give his opening statements, calling Kavanaugh an extremely qualified candidate.
Questioning of Kavanaugh will begin Wednesday, and votes on the Senate floor could occur this month.
Kavanaugh could be on the bench when the court begins its new term on Oct. 1.