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Democrats Walk Out of Senate Judiciary Committee Meeting

At least half of the Democratic members of the Senate Judiciary Committee walked out of Friday morning’s meeting in which Republicans decided along party lines to schedule a vote on Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh.

Sens. Richard Blumenthal, Kamala Harris, Sheldon Whitehouse, and Mazie Hirono left the room after Republicans blocked Democratic efforts to subpoena Kavanaugh’s high school friend Mark Judge, who was reportedly a witness to the alleged assault of Christine Blasey Ford. Sen. Patrick Leahy soon followed, and staff for Sen. Cory Booker of New Jersey reportedly left the room as well.

Hirono voiced her objection to the decision before walking out, saying, “This is just totally ridiculous. What a railroad job. My answer is no, no, no!” Harris and Cory Booker both stayed silent in protest of Republicans’ handling of the meeting.

Harris later tweeted, calling the hearing a “sham” and said that “Dr. Ford and the American people deserve better.”

Ranking member Dianne Feinstein, who remained in the room, told the remaining members of the committee that she “hoped we would do better and show women that our country, our committee, has in fact changed. This isn’t a political battle for power, as some have said. This is a serious undertaking with serious allegations. While the Republican strategy is no longer attack the victim, it is ignore the victim. The entire country is watching now how we handle these serious allegations.”