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Trump judicial nominee faces brutal grilling at Senate hearing as even Republicans slam his vague answers

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Both Republicans and Democrats hammered President Trump’s Second Circuit Court of Appeals nominee this Wednesday after he refused to answer their questions regarding controversial statements and writings he’s made in the past, POLITICO reports.

Steven Menashi has come under fire for dozens of editorials and blog posts he wrote in the late 90s and early 2000s where he called recipients of need-based financial aid “grasshoppers.” He also disparaged “ethnically heterogeneous societies” and said they “exhibit less political and civic engagement, less effective governing institutions, and few public goods.”

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At one point during the hearing, Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) slammed Menashi for dodging his questions.

“It is inappropriate for you to seek this nomination. It is inappropriate for you to sit there and stonewall this committee and refuse to answer any questions about who you are and what you believe,” Durbin said.

Sen. John Kennedy (R-LA) also tore into Menashi for being vague regarding a question about school shootings, among other things.

“Counsel, you’re a really smart guy but I wish you’d be more forthcoming,” Kennedy told Menashi. “This isn’t supposed to be a game, we’re supposed to try to understand not how you’re going to rule but how you’re going to think.”

Even GOP Senator Lindsey Graham (NC) voiced frustration with Menashi, slamming him for an editorial he wrote about trial lawyers which suggested they take advantage of the public. According to Menashi, he wrote the piece before he went to law school and it doesn’t represent his current views.

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When asked about his time working for the White House, Menashi continued to be less-than-forthcoming.

“I’m just asking if you have worked or advised on the administration’s policy of separating families at the border,” Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) told him. “I’m not asking what, just whether you’ve done it.”

As Menashi continued to obfuscate, Graham chimed in to defend Feinstein.

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“Mr. Menashi we’re not going to do this, you’re not going to answer his questions and not answer hers,” Graham said.

As the hearing went forward, protesters gathered outside and chanted, “Title IX is one the line!” As Newsweek points out, Menashi has “frequently opposed laws promoting equality for women, the LGBTQ community and minorities.”

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Trump nominated Menashi in August for a lifetime appointment to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. He currently serves as the associate White House counsel and special assistant to Trump.


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MSNBC’s Nicolle Wallace erupts over GOP attempt to question Vindman’s loyalty: ‘I’m constantly shocked by the bottomlessness’

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During a roundtable discussion on MSNBC this Tuesday, host Nicolle Wallace slammed Republicans' apparent attempts to call into question Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman's patriotism during his testimony in the House impeachment inquiry into President Trump.

"This is the smear campaign against Lt. Col. Vindman," Wallace said. "It is active, it is live, and today it spilled out in this public hearing."

"I am constantly shocked by the bottomlessness of the Republicans' cravennesses in trying to defend Donald Trump," she said later in the segment. "This is an active duty military person sitting there in his uniform talking about his story, but it does not put any brakes in the system on a line of questioning clearly intended to insinuate that he has duel loyalties."

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Trump mounts sexist attack on Pelosi during impeachment hearing: ‘I think the woman is grossly incompetent’

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President Donald Trump attacked House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) from the White House on Tuesday.

As impeachment testimony was underway in the House, Trump told reporters in a Cabinet meeting that Pelosi is "grossly incompetent."

The president also said that Republicans are "killing it" in the impeachment hearings.

But Trump took a shot at Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman, an expert on Ukraine who was testifying at the time.

"I don't know him. ... I never saw the man," he said. "I understand now he wears his uniform when he goes in. No, I don't know Vindman at all. What I do know is that even he said that the transcript was correct."

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‘You ran out of a book signing!’ Donald Trump Jr torn to shreds for questioning Vindman’s heroism

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Donald Trump Jr. questioned the military service of Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman, and was sprayed with venom.

The president's eldest son posted a link to a Federalist article suggesting Vindman is not a dedicated military officer and public servant, a line of questioning which Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) also pursued during an impeachment hearing.

"Let’s Stop Pretending Every Impeachment Witness Is A Selfless Hero," Trump Jr. tweeted, quoting the piece's headline.

Let’s Stop Pretending Every Impeachment Witness Is A Selfless Hero https://t.co/f2Jq7SdxO9

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