Two dozen protesters of Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh poured into the office of Senate Judiciary Committee chairman Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, on Thursday, demanding the senator appear before them.
“Grassley staffers told Capitol Police that the protesters also banged on doors and windows,” the Daily Caller News Foundation reported.
In video shared from the incident, the demonstrators could be heard chanting, “Chuck Grassley come out, we’ve got some things to talk about.”
Protesters in Grassley’s office now chanting “Chuck Grassley come out, we’ve got somethings to talk about” as they protest Brett Kavanaugh. pic.twitter.com/GbMjB1rrS9
— Jason Donner (@jason_donner) September 6, 2018
The protesters — from various liberal groups including NARAL Pro-Choice America, Women’s March, Center for Popular Democracy — also chanted, “Women’s choices, women’s rights,” according to Fox News.
Capitol Hill police officers quickly arrived on the scene and closed the main entrance to Grassley’s office in the Hart Senate Office Building, effectively sealing the protesters inside.
Grassley’s communications director, Michael Zona, told Fox that the senator offered to speak with the demonstrators, but they declined.
USA Today reported that a coalition of groups opposing Kavanaugh’s nomination urged protesters from around the country to descend on Capitol Hill this week.
Capitol Police arrested 70 people on the first day of the Supreme Court nominee’s hearing on Tuesday for outbursts and disruptions. The same conduct by the demonstrators continued on Wednesday and Thursday.
The atmosphere became so volatile on Tuesday that Kavanaugh’s wife took the couple’s young daughters, ages 10 and 13, out of the hearing room.
“The protests are not normal, but these are not normal times,” acknowledged Jennifer Epps-Addison — network president and co-executive director of the Center for Popular Democracy Action, which is helping coordinate the demonstrations.
“These women are standing up because they know that if they’re quiet now and they allow these rigged, shamed hearings to proceed, their lives are going to be impacted in the future,” she added.
A coalition of 13 progressive groups, including Women’s March and Demand Progress, took Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer to task in a letter released Wednesday for not doing enough to oppose Kavanaugh’s appointment to the high court.
“Your job as Senate Democratic leader is to lead your caucus in complete opposition to (President Donald) Trump’s attempted Supreme Court takeover and to defend everyone threatened by a Trump Supreme Court,” the letter reads.
“The Democratic Party’s progressive base expects nothing less than all-out resistance to Trump’s dangerous agenda,” the groups added. “They know that anything less than 49 Democratic votes against Kavanaugh would be a massive failure of your leadership.”
South Carolina Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham pointed out during the confirmation hearing on Wednesday that opposition to Kavanaugh among Senate Democrats came minutes after his nomination in early July.
.@LindseyGrahamSC: Within an hour & 18 minutes of your nomination, you became the biggest threat to democracy in the eyes of some of the most partisan people… who would hold Kagan & Sotomayor up as highly qualified & would challenge any Republican on their vote against them. pic.twitter.com/aK3whzC5k5
— GOP (@GOP) September 5, 2018
“All I can say, within an hour and 18 minutes of your nomination, you became the biggest threat to democracy in the eyes of some of the most partisan people in the country, who would hold (Justices Elena) Kagan and (Sonia) Sotomayor up as highly qualified and would challenge any Republican on their vote against them.”
Graham noted they he and many other GOP senators voted for Kagan and Sotomayor, not because they shared the nominees’ liberal judicial philosophy, but because they were well qualified and to be expected from a progressive president like Barack Obama.
“You should get 90 votes, but you won’t,” Graham said to Kavanaugh. “I’m sorry it has gotten to where it has. It’s got nothing to do with you.”
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