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Senate to hold Jackson Supreme Court confirmation hearings March 21-24

The questioning of Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson is set for March 22 and 23.
Image: Ketanji Brown Jackson
Supreme Court nominee Ketanji Brown Jackson at a meeting with Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., on Wednesday. Susan Walsh / AP

WASHINGTON — The Senate plans to hold confirmation hearings for President Joe Biden's Supreme Court nominee, Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson, from March 21 to 24, Judiciary Committee Chair Dick Durbin, D-Ill., announced Wednesday.

Durbin laid out the schedule in a letter to colleagues.

He said Monday, March 21, would feature statements from committee members and people introducing Jackson and remarks from Jackson herself.

The senators will question Jackson on March 22 and March 23 — typically the most contentious part of such hearings.

And it will wrap up on March 24 with testimony from the American Bar Association and other witnesses.

"As I have said from the time that Justice Breyer announced his retirement, the Committee will undertake a fair and timely process to consider Judge Jackson’s nomination," Durbin wrote, referring to Justice Stephen Breyer, who is leaving the court at the end of this term. "I look forward to Judge Jackson’s appearance before the Committee and to respectful and dignified hearings."

Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, the committee's ranking member, said the timeline is acceptable to him if it offers "enough time for every Republican that wants to have a face-to-face meeting with the candidate."

"I haven't had Republicans tell me how many want to meet with her, but I know all of the members of the committee do," he said. "We're going to take our job responsibility. We're going to have a fair hearing, an open hearing, thoroughly vet.

"This vacancy doesn't occur until the last Friday of June, so I don't know whether there's a big hurry," Grassley said. "But I'm not going to argue with Durbin at this point."

Jackson, a judge on the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for Washington, D.C., met with key senators Wednesday, including Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky. Democrats control the chamber but narrowly, at 50-50 plus the vice president's tiebreaking vote.

Schumer said after the meeting that Jackson is "an amazing person" who "belongs on the court."

"I think she deserves support from the other side of the aisle,” he said. "And I am hopeful that a good number of Republicans will vote for her, given who she is."

After the committee finishes its hearing and votes, the full Senate will vote. Confirming Jackson will require the support of all 50 Democratic-voting senators — there is no filibuster for Supreme Court nominations.