Senator and vice presidential nominee Kamala Harris is still a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee and will undoubtedly be front and center for the confirmation hearing of Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett.
The California Democrat earned a reputation during the 2018 confirmation process of Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh when she challenged him over his high school partying days and the sexual allegations against him.
Two years later, she now has an opportunity to use the committee hearings to bolster her campaign which is raising concerns among her fellow Democrats.
From the Washington Examiner:
Concerns regarding fellow California Sen. Dianne Feinstein, 87, and whether the committee’s ranking member is up to leading the Democratic interrogation of Barrett have been met with suggestions Harris should spearhead the effort instead.
But some Democrats, including two-term Maryland Attorney General Douglas Gansler, are cautioning Harris to cede the spotlight when the 22-person panel opens the first of four days of hearings into Barrett on Oct. 12.
Gansler, who served alongside Harris when she was California’s top law enforcement officer from 2011 to 2017, said she should try to be as apolitical as possible during the process, concentrating instead on Barrett’s ideology. That contradicts advice given to President Trump to think of Barrett as his running mate based on how Republicans energize and organize around the issue of the Supreme Court.
According to the report, Gansler said Harris should act more of a vice presidential candidate and less like a prosecutor during the committee hearings.
“She’s no longer just a prosecutor and no longer just a senator, she’s a vice presidential candidate,” Gansler told the outlet.
“It would behoove Sen. Harris to do the least amount of questioning that she can do in this case because she should not and does not want to appear to be political,” he continued.
“The idea that this woman, this judge is going to be confirmed to the Supreme Court ought to be a lightning rod to motivate women to come out to vote to preserve the right to their choice,” Gansler also said. “But I don’t think that Sen. Harris ought to get in the middle of that. There’s plenty of other Democrats that can make that case and ask those questions.”