Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.) filed for an injunction in federal court to stop a final vote on Brett Kavanaugh. The filing claims that the Republican majority is obstructing his constitutional duty to give advise and consent on nominees. The filing is entirely and utterly meritless. It will be dismissed and is unlikely to receive a hearing on the claim.
The filing in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia makes the specious claim that the refusal to receive documents constitutes a constitutional violation. I agreed with the Democrats that the Administration has wrongly withheld too many documents from the background of Brett Kavanaugh. However, the majority of this Committee has voted to go forward and agrees with the degree of disclosure. Merkley is subject to the rule established by his own institution in handling such nominations. For much of our history there were no confirmation hearings and little review of a nominee’s background.
I have spent much of my career arguing for legislative standing for members to bring lawsuits alleging constitutional violations. We won a major victory in the ACA case where I represented the United States House of Representatives. This undermines those efforts and fulfills the narrative of opponents that members would just continually file politically motivated, legally frivolous claims.