Senate Judiciary Committee

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Senate Republicans: No Hearings on Scalia Pick

Judiciary panel reaches 'consensus'

(Newser) - The chances of President Obama naming Antonin Scalia's successor just took a nosedive: Republicans on the committee that would consider his nominee say they won't hold any such hearings in Obama's final year, reports the Hill . Lindsey Graham said the Judiciary Committee reached a "consensus" on... More »

'You're Not Eric Holder, Are You?'

Attorney General nominee Loretta Lynch testifies before Senate panel

(Newser) - President Obama's pick to be the next attorney general has wrapped up a daylong confirmation hearing on Capitol Hill, and the AP writes that Loretta Lynch's day can be summed up in one question posed to her by Republican Sen. John Cornyn. “You’re not Eric Holder,... More »

It's Israel's Turn to Be Ticked at the NSA

Latest Snowden reveal 'not acceptable'

(Newser) - Slide over Germany , Brazil , and France , there's a new member in the Angry NSA Targets club: Israel. Several Israeli officials have lashed out at the US, report CNN and the AP , following new leaks Friday that the NSA had spied on four Israeli offices—including the prime minister's.... More »

NSA Official: Phone-Snooping Foiled a Lone Plot

Surveillance orders declassified

(Newser) - Skeptical senators from both parties yesterday quizzed top intelligence officials about the NSA's sweeping domestic call surveillance at a testy Senate Judiciary Committee hearing. Ahead of the hearing, the Obama administration declassified and released documents outlining the rules for accessing information from the surveillance program and listing multiple violations... More »

Senate Panel Clears Immigration Reform

Full chamber should vote next month

(Newser) - Far-reaching legislation to grant a chance at citizenship to millions of immigrants living illegally in the United States cleared the Senate Judiciary Committee on a solid bipartisan vote tonight after supporters somberly sidestepped a controversy over the rights of gay spouses. The 13-5 vote cleared the way for an epic... More »

Feinstein to Cruz on Guns: 'I'm Not a Sixth-Grader'

Senate panel approves assault weapons ban, but it looks doomed

(Newser) - It got testy on Capitol Hill today as the Senate Judiciary Committee debated gun legislation. After Ted Cruz suggested that Dianne Feinstein's proposal to ban assault weapons was unconstitutional, she shot back: “I'm not a sixth-grader,” reports the Hill . "It's fine you want to... More »

Giffords: Too Many Children Are Dying

Former rep is passionate, Wayne LaPierre defiant in testimony

(Newser) - Gabrielle Giffords delivered a short, powerful, and somewhat difficult to watch statement on Capitol Hill today to kick off the Senate Judiciary Committee's hearing on gun control. "Speaking is difficult, but I need to say something important," Giffords said in halting tones. "Too many children are... More »

Giffords Testifying at Senate Gun Violence Hearing

Where, unfortunately for Lindsey Graham and ted Cruz, there will be no guns

(Newser) - Continuing her campaign against gun violence, Gabrielle Giffords will testify today at a Senate hearing on the issue. The Senate Judiciary Committee hearing—the first on gun violence in 14 months—was already expected to be a dramatic showdown, the Washington Post reports. Giffords is not expected to take questions;... More »

Al Franken Dismantles DOMA Backer's Testimony

Ex-comedian gets laughs from chamber

(Newser) - Stuart Smalley was nowhere in sight yesterday as Al Franken shredded a Defense of Marriage Act supporter. Seems the gentleman from Minnesota took offense with Focus on the Family's Thomas Minnery and his citation of a federal study that found children in opposite-sex married families fared way better than... More »

Senate Panel OKs Kagan

Supreme Court nomination now goes to full Senate

(Newser) - The Senate Judiciary Committee voted today to approve Elena Kagan's nomination to the Supreme Court. The 13-6 vote sends Kagan's nomination to the full Senate, where she's expected to be confirmed as early as next week to succeed John Paul Stevens. Just one Republican, Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, joined... More »

This Woman Is Actually Having Fun

Nobody told Elena Kagan that confirmation hearings are painful, dreary affairs

(Newser) - You can fault her, as the New York Times did, for giving away practically nothing of her judicial philosophy or her views on key issues in her Senate confirmation testimony yesterday, but Dalia Lithwick notes in Slate that it was pretty damn hard not to like the Elena Kagan we... More »

Kagan: 'I Will Listen Hard'

Supreme Court nominee treads lightly in opening statement

(Newser) - The first day of Elena Kagan's confirmation hearings has concluded, as expected, without any fireworks. "I will listen hard, to every party before the court and to each of my colleagues. I will work hard," the Supreme Court nominee and current solicitor general said. " And I will... More »

What Senators Should Ask Elena Kagan

Confirmation hearings must focus on big picture

(Newser) - The process Elena Kagan once derided as a "vapid and hollow charade" gets under way tomorrow when the solicitor general appears before the Senate Judiciary Committee as President Obama's second Supreme Court nominee. "Instead of playing cat-and-mouse with the nominee about how she would rule in future cases,... More »

GOPers Smell Impeachment in Sestak Job Offer

Repeated calls to Holder to appoint special prosecutor

(Newser) - Republicans are calling for the attorney general to appoint a special prosecutor to investigate Joe Sestak's claims that someone in the Obama administration offered him a high-ranking job to drop out of the Pennsylvania primary race against Arlen Specter. And they've already used the “I” word. “It's very... More »

Obama Pick for Justice Post Withdraws

GOP had blasted Dawn Johnsen for criticizing Bush on terror

(Newser) - President Obama's nominee to head the Justice Department's Office of Legal Counsel has withdrawn her bid for confirmation, after several Republicans objected to her criticism of the Bush administration's terrorist interrogation policies. Dawn Johnsen's withdrawal—a setback for the Obama administration—was announced by the White House on a day... More »

Holder on 9/11 Trial: 'We Need Not Cower'

AG defends decision to try Khalid Sheikh Mohammed in New York

(Newser) - Republicans grilled Eric Holder on Capitol Hill today, criticizing his decision to try Khalid Sheikh Mohammed in civilian court. But Holder offered a forceful rebuttal, saying, “We need not cower in the face of this enemy. Our institutions are strong and our people are ready.” He added that... More »

GOP Looks Tacky in Vote on Sotomayor

(Newser) - Senate Republicans locked arms against Sonia Sotomayor yesterday … or would have, if they’d bothered to stay for the Judiciary Committee’s vote. Instead, half ducked out, leaving Jeff Sessions to repeat “No by proxy,” over and over, writes Dana Milbank in the Washington Post. It was... More »

Judiciary Committee Approves Sotomayor

(Newser) - The Senate Judiciary Committee has voted to approve Sonia Sotomayor to be the first Hispanic justice on the Supreme Court. The committee voted 13-6 this morning to send Sotomayor's nomination to the full Senate, where she's expected to be confirmed easily next week. Just one Republican, South Carolina's Lindsey Graham,... More »

Hatch, Cornyn Get on GOP's Anti-Sotomayor Bandwagon

(Newser) - In an indication that conservative Republicans are uniting against Sonia Sotomayor, Senate Judiciary Committee members John Cornyn and Orrin Hatch today pledged to vote against her, CNN reports. Though moderate Republicans worry opposition could hurt the party with Hispanics, the conservative base has lobbied hard against the Supreme Court nominee.... More »

Graham Blasts GOP's 'Blind Ideology'

Republican embraces bipartisanship on Sotomayor nomination

(Newser) - Lindsey Graham’s been on the Republican hot seat since throwing his support behind Sonia Sotomayor, but he doesn’t think much of the purity police attacking him. “I have no desire to be up here in an irrelevant status,” the senior senator from South Carolina tells Politico.... More »

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