Can Susan Collins afford political gamble to back right to choose?

Brett Kavanaugh's dangerous reasoning on allowing assault weapons

Brett Kavanaugh at his Senate confirmation hearing on Wednesday

In this September 5, 2018, photo, President Donald Trump's Supreme Court nominee, Brett Kavanaugh testifies before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington.

Kamala Harris put Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh on edge with a surprise question at his confirmation hearing on whether he spoke with anyone about the investigation into Russian election meddling.

New York University law professor Melissa Murray testified during the Senate hearing that Kavanaugh's judicial record shows "a cramped reading of the right to liberty and personal decision-making that distorts or ignores existing precedent".

"I'm not aware-I'm not-thinking of any right now, senator", he finally said, stammering a bit.

Kavanaugh, asked during this week's hearing whether he ever suspected the material was taken from Democrats, responded, "No". In her interview with the Press Herald, Collins said that she was undecided on the judge's nomination - and evinced concern about the possibility that Kavanaugh lied under oath during his confirmation hearing to be a judge on the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals.

In his dissent, Kavanaugh conceded that unauthorized immigrants on USA soil do have a right to due process under the 14th Amendment, but wrote that undocumented youth in custody were not entitled to "abortion on demand".

Booker called the process "a bit of a sham".

The documents made public on Thursday dated from Kavanaugh's service in the White House under Republican President George W. Bush more than a decade ago.

At issue are thousands of memos a GOP staffer was able to access on the Democratic side of a computer server shared by Democrats and Republicans on the Judiciary Committee early in the previous decade.

On abortion, Kavanaugh noted that Roe has been affirmed "many times".

Kavanaugh's hearing has been marked by controversies and constant protests by both Democrats and activists in the public gallery.

"The pain that this caused Jane is something I can't even describe", Garza told the committee. "There was never anything like that", Miranda said. I think Judge Kavenaugh is going to be confirmed. "Adjourn the hearing!" Sarsour, 38, yelled on Tuesday morning as she was the first to be taken out of the hearing room by police officers.

The finger-pointing over the unusual vetting process for Trump's nominee made for a rough start for the final day of questioning of Kavanaugh, who has so far avoided major missteps that could block his confirmation. Hunter Lechance, a 15-year-old asthma sufferer, warned that if Kavanaugh is confirmed it would mean "more air pollution, more asthma attacks, and more premature deaths for the millions of Americans unfortunate enough to be afflicted with asthma like me". Senator Booker, by the way, was especially pathetic as he said he would risk expulsion from the Senate by leaking classified documents which, in fact, had actually been declassified.

In an interview with The Daily Caller on Tuesday, President Trump said, "I don't know why they don't take care of a situation like that because it's awful".

Garza said she was concerned that had his ruling not been later overturned, the precedent it set could have limited the constitutional rights of others in detention seeking abortions or other medical care, including adults detained by ICE or U.S. citizens incarcerated in the criminal justice system. If he could lie back then, obviously he could also lie this time around. "I owe my loyalty to the Constitution, and the Constitution establishes me as an independent judge, bound to follow the law as written".

Paul Callan is a CNN legal analyst, a former NY homicide prosecutor and of counsel to the NY law firm of Edelman & Edelman PC, focusing on wrongful conviction and civil rights cases.

Djokovic beats Del Potro to win US Open
Trump warns of tariffs on another $267B imports from China