Sep 17, 2019

Ayanna Pressley to introduce legislation for Kavanaugh impeachment inquiry

Photo: Zach Gibson/Getty Images

Rep. Ayanna Pressley (D-Mass.) is set to introduce legislation Tuesday demanding impeachment proceedings against Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh after a weekend report expanded allegations of sexual misconduct against him, The Hill reports.

  • "Sexual predators do not deserve a seat on the nation’s highest court and Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation process set a dangerous precedent," Pressley said in a statement. "We must demand justice for survivors and hold Kavanaugh accountable for his actions."

Driving the news: A number of presidential candidates and lawmakers over the weekend began calling for Kavanaugh's impeachment. A New York Times report Saturday unveiled that a Yale classmate of Kavanaugh's, Max Stier, told the FBI and Senators that he'd once seen Kavanaugh take his pants down at a party and that his friends thrusted his penis into a woman's hand.

  • The FBI did not investigate the event.
  • The Times ultimately corrected its story to note that "the book reports that the female student declined to be interviewed and that friends say she does not recall the incident."
  • The NYT also outlined details of an incident against Deborah Ramirez, who alleges Kavanaugh once swung his exposed penis at her, causing her hand to touch it as she attempted to ward him off. Ramirez had publicly accused Kavanaugh of misconduct during his confirmation process.

Reality check: Some senior Democrats have deemed the idea as unrealistic, Politico notes.

  • “We’ve got to get beyond this ‘impeachment is the answer to every problem.’ It’s not realistic,” Senate Minority Whip Dick Durbin said Monday. “If that’s how we are identified in Congress, as the impeachment Congress, we run the risk that people will feel we’re ignoring the issues that mean a lot to them as families.”

Go deeper: The 3 villains of Democrats' 2020 plan

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First look: Harris asks for Kavanaugh investigation

Photos: Win McNamee/Getty Images; Robyn Beck/AFP/Getty Images

Sen. Kamala Harris is asking House Judiciary Committee chairman Jerry Nadler to form an outside task force to investigate the sexual assault allegations against Brett Kavanaugh and whether he lied to Congress during his testimony, according to a letter first given to Axios.

Why it matters: Nadler and others on the committee have poured cold water on the idea of investigating Kavanaugh because they're instead focused on impeaching President Trump. But Harris argues that an outside task force could allow Democrats to answer the growing calls for Kavanaugh's impeachment and also investigate the president.

Go deeperArrowSep 17, 2019

Supreme Court set to weigh in on 2020's most polarizing issues

Illustration: Rebecca Zisser/Axios

The Supreme Court is wasting no time diving into the thick of 2020 politics. Starting Tuesday, the court will begin debate on whether employers can fire someone for being gay or transgender.

Why it matters: It's the first in a slew of polarizing issues the court will decide over the next 9 months. And Justice Brett Kavanaugh, a polarizing figure himself, will be at the center of it all.

Go deeperArrowOct 6, 2019

No. 2 Senate Democrat announces support for impeachment proceedings

Sen. Dick Durbin. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Senate Minority Whip Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) told a group of reporters on Tuesday that he supports impeachment proceedings in the House amid allegations of President Trump pressuring Ukraine to investigate Joe Biden, NBC News reports.

“I think this may be the straw that broke the camel’s back. There’s so much cumulative evidence here and many of us have wondered if this would ever see the light of day in an impeachment inquiry, but I think now we have to move forward.”

Why it matters: Durbin is the 2nd highest-ranking in the House. His comments come as scores of House Democrats suddenly announced their support for impeachment if the claims surrounding Trump and Ukraine prove to be true.

Go deeper: The impeachment whip list

Keep ReadingArrowSep 24, 2019