WASHINGTON – Senate
Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) and Ranking Member Dianne
Feinstein (D-Calif.) today requested records from Judge Brett Kavanaugh’s work
for the Office of Independent Counsel during the Clinton administration.
The request comes as the committee continues its review of more than 125,000
pages received yesterday from Judge Brett Kavanaugh’s White House work.
to the National Archives and Records Administration, the senators
requested documents from Kavanaugh’s service in the Office of Independent
Counsel Kenneth Starr, including all emails Kavanaugh sent or received and all
documents he authored, edited, revised or approved. The National Archives
the volume of these documents to be 20,000 pages.
more than 125,000 records from Kavanaugh’s time as a White House
lawyer in the George W. Bush administration. The committee expects these
records to be made public, pending consultation with the National Archives.
Last week, Grassley
that the National Archives produce documents from Kavanaugh’s
work in the White House Counsel’s Office as well as records related to his
nomination to be a judge on the D.C. Circuit. The National Archives estimates
the total production to be up to one million pages. For context, the
largest executive branch production for previous Supreme Court nominees was
roughly 180,000 pages for Justice Neil Gorsuch.
committee is also reviewing more than 17,000 pages from Judge Kavanaugh’s public
as well as more than 8,500 pages from cases in
which Judge Kavanaugh authored or joined opinions during his 12 years on the D.C.
Honorable David S. Ferriero
of the United States
Archives and Records Administration
Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Dear Mr. Ferriero:
ask that you provide documents to the United States Senate Committee on the
Judiciary in connection with President Trump’s nomination of Brett M. Kavanaugh
to be an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States.
Kavanaugh served as an Associate Counsel in the Office of Independent Counsel
Kenneth W. Starr from September 6, 1994 until November 20, 1997, and again from
April 27, 1998 until December 1, 1998. We request that the documents you
identify and provide to the Committee from his service in the Office of
Independent Counsel include the following, consistent with the attached
(1) Documents from
Brett M. Kavanaugh’s service as Associate Counsel in the Office of Independent
Counsel, including all documents preserved in his staff files and all documents
he authored in whole or in part, edited, revised, or approved;
(2) All memos,
letters, or electronic mail sent by or received by Brett M. Kavanaugh during
his tenure in the Office of Independent Counsel, including any such memos,
letters, or electronic mail on which he was a carbon copy or blind carbon copy
recipient, and including any documents attached to such memos, letters, or
understand that reviewing these documents as the Freedom of Information Act
(FOIA) requires will be a significant undertaking. Nevertheless, in order
to expedite your response and to facilitate the Committee’s prompt review,
please produce documents on a rolling basis as you identify categories responsive
to this request.
recognize the possibility that some documents responsive to our request may be
exempt from public disclosure under FOIA. See 5 U.S.C. § 552(b);
28 U.S.C. § 594(k)(3)(A). We nevertheless have an important
constitutional obligation to examine thoroughly Judge Kavanaugh’s record, and
the FOIA exemptions are “not authority to withhold information from
Congress.” 5 U.S.C. § 552(d). We therefore ask that you provide to
the Committee on a “Committee Confidential” basis those documents that would
otherwise be exempt from public disclosure under 5 U.S.C. § 552(b). In
addition, and because there is a significant public interest in understanding
the record of any Supreme Court nominee, we hope that you will endeavor to
ensure public access to as much of the record as possible. To the extent
that these records contain classified national security information or personal
privacy information, please contact the Committee so that we can discuss
further how those materials might be handled.
further recognize that some documents responsive to this request may be subject
to constitutional or common-law privileges against disclosure. We intend
to respect claims of privilege. We hope, however, that the number of
responsive documents subject to claims of privilege will be as few as possible.
recognize that reviewing the archives and producing these documents is a
significant task, and we thank you in advance for your efforts.
Donald F. McGahn
Counsel to the President
Pennsylvania Avenue NW