legal-affairs

Impeachment or Bust? Democrats Have Few Options on Kavanaugh Inquiries
Lawsuits, possible House probes expected, but party largely staying mum for now

Democratic members of the Senate Judiciary Committee ponder their next move during a session on the nomination of now-Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh on Sept. 28. (Sarah Silbiger/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Brett M. Kavanaugh looked bewildered. Sen. Kamala Harris looked perturbed but determined. It was hour ten of the then-Supreme Court nominee’s testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee early last month, and the California Democrat seemed to have him backed into a corner.

Harris, a former prosecutor, was very much back in a courtroom. She was trying to get her witness, Kavanaugh, to reveal the name — or names — of anyone at the Washington law firm of Trump’s personal attorney with whom she alleged he had discussed special counsel Robert S. Mueller III and his ongoing Russia election meddling investigation the president almost daily refers to as a “witch hunt.”

Rep. Chris Collins Will Face Trial In 2020
Prosecutors asked to move the trial to 2019

Rep. Chris Collins, R-N.Y., leaves the House Republican Conference meeting in the Capitol on in June 2018. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

New York Rep. Chris Collins, who faces insider trading charges stemming from his investment in an Australian biotech company, will get his day in court on Feb. 3, 2020.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Scott Hartman repeatedly asked to move up the trial date, stating there is a “strong public interest in seeing this case resolved in 2019,” CNN reported.

California Man Charged With Threatening to Kill Sen. Dianne Feinstein
Emailed death threat arrived on Sept. 30 amid pitched partisan battle over Kavanaugh nomination

Senate Judiciary Committee ranking member Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., was the target of a death threat on Sept. 30. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

A California man has been charged with threatening to kill Sen. Dianne Feinstein amid the pitched partisan battle over the confirmation process of new associate Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh.

The Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office charged Craig Steven Shaver, 47, of Lancaster, California, with a felony count of attempted criminal threats and possession of a firearm by a felon.

Rohrabacher Says Trump Will Liberalize Marijuana Policy After Midterms
Administration to leave recreational use up to states, legalize medical marijuana at federal level

Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, R-Calif., said he has received assurances from the White House that “the president intends on keeping his campaign promise” to legalize medical marijuana at the national level. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

President Donald Trump’s administration will work to relax federal marijuana laws and regulations after the midterms, according to one of his staunchest Republican defenders in the House.

Rep. Dana Rohrabacher of California told Fox Business on Thursday he has worked to secure a “solid commitment” from administration officials to legalize medical marijuana across the federal level and leave recreational use of the drug up to the states.

Senate Judiciary Returns to Business as Usual After Kavanaugh
No protesters. No extra security. No media buzz. And Lindsey Graham barely said a word

After a few weeks of passionate speeches, Sen. Lindsey Graham was subdued Thursday as the Judiciary Committee got back to business as usual. (Jim Bourg/Reuters/Pool)

Life after the Brett Kavanaugh fight got off to a subdued start Thursday for the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Gone was the energetic buzz of news media, protesters and police officers that filled the hallway outside the committee’s hearing room in prior weeks. Inside the room, the senators spoke only in muted tones that contrasted sharply with the passionate speeches just two weeks earlier during a committee vote on the Supreme Court pick.

K Street Turns Its Lonely Eyes to Grassley
Republican holds the key to cascading possibilities, from Judiciary to Finance to Banking

Will Judiciary Chairman Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, make the leap to head the Finance Committee next year? (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Fresh off a divisive Supreme Court battle, Senate Judiciary Chairman Charles E. Grassley has a complicated decision to make next month that has the business world watching with keen interest: whether to make the jump over to the Finance Committee chairmanship in the 116th Congress.

“Ask me Nov. 7,” was all the Iowa Republican would say earlier this week on the topic. But the allure of returning to the helm of perhaps the most powerful committee in Congress, with jurisdiction over taxes, trade and health care policy, can’t be lost on Grassley, who was Finance chairman for part of 2001 and again from 2003 through 2006.

Republicans Restart Push for Lower Court Judges
Democrats object to the process

Eric E. Murphy, nominee to be U.S. Circuit Judge for the Sixth Circuit, introduces his wife, Michelle, and daughters Isabelle, 7, right, and Grace, 9, during a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on judicial nominations in Dirksen Building on Wednesday. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

With the fight over Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh behind them, Republicans on Wednesday restarted the Senate Judiciary Committee’s push to confirm lower court judges with a hearing on a pair of nominees that Democrats staunchly oppose for their legal work on health care, LGBT rights and other issues.

The hearing featured almost everything Democrats have complained about the confirmation process during President Donald Trump’s administration — including scheduling more than one circuit court nominee in a single hearing and doing so over the objections of a home state senator.

Mazie Hirono: ‘I Think Lindsey Is Channeling Trump’
Hawaii Democratic senator replies to GOP Sen. Graham’s criticism of Kavanaugh confirmation ‘mob rule’

Sen. Mazie Hirono dropped some choice remarks on her Judiciary Committee colleague. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

In Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham’s sharp critique of her, Sen. Mazie K. Hirono hears echoes of his party’s standard-bearer.

“I do think Lindsey is channeling [President Donald] Trump to a great extent,” the Hawaii Democrat said Tuesday in an interview with the Honolulu Star-Advertiser. “Frankly, it is so outrageous. It just shows that they will say anything to win.”

Trump Largely Focuses on Own Re-Election at Iowa Rally for GOP Incumbents
President wants to find out if Elizabeth Warren really ‘has Indian blood’

President Donald Trump, here in July, was in Iowa on Tuesday night for a campaign rally for two vulnerable House Republicans. (Joe Raedle/Getty Images file photo)

Very much in re-election mode even before next month’s midterms, President Donald Trump took jabs at potential Democratic candidates at an Iowa rally Tuesday night, calling their party “an angry mob.”

“You don’t hand matches to an arsonists. And you don’t hand power to an angry mob,” he told rallygoers in Council Bluffs, Iowa. “If you want to defeat the swamp, you’ll have to elect Republicans.”

Grassley: Judiciary Panel Won’t Consider Supreme Court Nominee for 2020 Vacancy
Declaration could put Iowa Republican at odds with Mitch McConnell

Senate Judiciary Chairman Charles E. Grassley speaks at a news conference on Oct. 4. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Revealing a potentially contentious Republican chasm, Senate Judiciary Chairman Charles E. Grassley told Fox News on Tuesday night that if he still leads the committee in 2020 and a Supreme Court seat becomes vacant, the panel would not consider a nominee.

That could put the Iowa Republican at odds with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.