Father of Parkland shooting victim approaches Kavanaugh at Supreme Court confirmation hearing

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"Before the Judge was able to shake his hand, security had intervened". He fiercely defended the independence of the Judiciary.

"The Supreme Court must never be viewed as a partisan institution".

In his opening statement, Kavanaugh vows to be a "pro-law judge" who will interpret the law impartially.

"A good judge must be an umpire - a neutral and impartial arbiter who favours no litigant or policy", Kavanaugh said in the excerpts released by the White House.

Grassley told her she was "out of order", but other Democrats chimed in to back up Harris, including Sen.

Earlier in the day, Guttenberg said, he had been publicly introduced during the hearing by Senator Dianne Feinstein, who had invited him as her guest. "This is a President who has shown us consistently that he is contemptuous of the rule of law", Durbin said.

Both senators were present at the Senate Judiciary Committee hearing, expressing their dissent to Kavanaugh's nomination, when the emails were sent. Democrats signaled that they would press Kavanaugh in depth on abortion and gun rights, among other issues, when they get to question the nominee.

Potential 2020 Democratic presidential hopefuls Sens.

The hearing proceeded despite Democrats' call for delay. Democratic Sen. Cory Booker asked Grassley.

Almost two dozen protestors were removed by Capitol Police from the hearing room shortly after it began, amid interruptions by multiple Democrats requesting that the hearing adjourn.

Republicans hold a one-vote majority in the Senate. There were no signs of Republican defections. They are concerned his confirmation would tip the balance of the Court firmly to the right. Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer complained it was impossible to go through them in time.

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Several dozen protesters, shouting one by one, disrupted the hearing at several points and were removed by police.

"You are the nominee of President Donald John Trump". We should have an open debate about this with the documents read, and so the American people can see them.

In the days leading up to Tuesday's hearing, Democrats slammed the White House for withholding more than 100,000 pages of records related to Kavanaugh.

Kavanaugh sat, fingers intertwined, quietly staring ahead at the committee members as audience members screamed while being dragged out of the hearing room. He occasionally jotted notes on paper.

With his hand extended, Mr Guttenberg appeared to introduce himself - but after looking directly at him for a few seconds, Mr Kavanaugh turned and walked away. Video of the encounter was shared widely on social media.

But the party's top lawmakers ultimately decided against such course of action, in part fearing the backlash from a made-for-TV moment that would only help the Republican Party, and impede any chances to stop the nomination of Kavanaugh, the report said.

Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, who chairs the Judiciary Committee, described Kavanaugh as one of the most qualified nominees he's ever encountered.

Questioning of the nominee will begin on Wednesday, and votes in committee and on the Senate floor could occur later in September.

If all goes according to Republicans' plans, the committee will vote later this month - nearly surely along straight party lines - to send his nomination to the full Senate in hopes of getting him on the court by the October 1 start of the 2018 term.

Democrats argue that they still haven't seen 90 percent of Kavanaugh's past work product and did not have time to review what they did receive prior to the hearing.