GOP senators attack and interrupt in final day of questioning U.S. Supreme Court nominee

By: - March 24, 2022 1:00 am

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer has said he hopes to have a final confirmation vote by Easter, or April 17. If Ketanji Brown Jackson is confirmed, she would join the Supreme Court later this summer. Screenshot from Senate Judiciary Committee livestream

Ossoff opened his remarks with an acknowledgement of his fellow Georgia Democrat, Raphael Warnock, who is not a member of the Judiciary Committee but joined Wednesday’s hearing as a spectator.

Ossoff asked Jackson about her upbringing and her family’s values. Jackson confirmed that her brother, Ketajh Brown, was a police officer in Baltimore after he served in the U.S. Army. Two of Jackson’s uncles were also police officers and her parents, an attorney and an educator, were also involved in public service.

Ossoff also questioned Jackson about a line in an opinion she wrote that “presidents are not kings.” The 2019 opinion struck down former President Donald Trump’s claim that former White House Counsel Donald McGahn could not be compelled to testify in front of Congress.

Jackson said the founders of the United States broke the power of a monarch into three branches and that each branch — legislative, executive and judicial — was constrained in its power. Throughout the hearings, Jackson has declined to weigh in on questions she considered matters of policy better suited to the legislative or executive branches.

Ossoff said emerging technologies would complicate long-standing constitutional protections, including against unreasonable search and seizure.

“I want to urge you, should you be confirmed, to remain vigilant about how the emergence of new technologies — the way that they become ubiquitous in our lives, the way that virtual spaces are increasingly akin to physical spaces — will require the court to consider very complex questions and to seek technical advice,” he said.

He also said the court should be transparent about the “origin and funding source” of groups providing technical expertise.

Speaking again in the evening, Ossoff commended Jackson’s poise throughout nearly 23 hours of questions over two days.

“You’ve had a lot of poison thrown at you,” he said. “And you’ve responded with substance and truth, and it’s shone through.”

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Ariana Figueroa
Ariana Figueroa

Ariana covers the nation's capital for States Newsroom. Her areas of coverage include politics and policy, lobbying, elections and campaign finance.