Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson has finished a three-day onslaught of aggressive questions from senators, concluding the tense Supreme Court confirmation hearing process.

Republican senators, who previously stated that they looked forward to “respectful” non-partisan interviewing of President Biden’s pick to replace Judge Stephen Breyer, repeatedly interrupted her and acted hostile when she declined to comment on certain questions they posed.

Many Democratic senators, on the other hand, stated that they would be delighted to have her on the Supreme Court and condemned the GOP’s behavior as an “outlandish affair.”

Senator Lindsey Graham was criticized for his aggressive questions during Judge Ketanji Jackson Brown's hearing
Senator Lindsey Graham was criticized for his aggressive questions during Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson’s hearing. Photo Credit: Shutterstock

During a lengthy 13-hour hearing on Tuesday, Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson was grilled about race, gender, criminal reform, abortion rights, prisoners of war, and child sex offenders, as Republicans focused on a subset of her cases that they deemed too lenient on crime.

Senator Lindsey Graham, who used the majority of his time to lambast how Judge Brett Kavanaugh was treated or that Biden did not choose his preferred candidate, Judge J. Michelle Childs, was criticized for his aggressive questions and hostile tone.

At one point, Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson was even asked by Texas Sen. Ted Cruz if she believed that babies could be racist or if she could define what it meant to be a “woman.”

Ben Sasse, a Republican Senator from Nebraska, spoke out against his own party to call attention to the “the jackassery we see around here” of “people mugging” for the cameras.

Sen. Graham’s behavior toward Judge Jackson also drew a frustrated response from Democratic Sen. Patrick J. Leahy of Vermont, who said that the committee was both rude and employed party politics over sensible questioning.

“You had a Republican member who went way over the time allotted to him, ignored the rules of the committee, badgered the nominee, would not even let her answer the questions,” Sen. Leahy said. “I’ve never seen anything like that.”

From his behavior this week, it appeared that Lindsey Graham would not be voting to confirm Judge Jackson to the Supreme Court. He previously wrote on Twitter that he was looking forward to “a respectful but interesting hearing in the Senate Judiciary Committee.”

Instead, Judge Jackson was subjected to three full days of questioning regarding previous cases she oversaw, and whether she personally agreed with many of her clients.

Republican Senator Josh Hawley repeatedly asked Judge Jackson if she regretted giving what he believed was a “slap on the wrist” to a sex offender in one of her cases.

“What I regret,” she was eventually able to reply, “is that in a hearing about my qualifications to be a justice on the Supreme Court, we have spent a lot of time focusing on this small subset of my sentences.”

Democrats remained confident, however, that even without a majority of Republican support or members within their own party such as Joe Manchin or Kyrsten Sinema, that Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson would be confirmed.

She would become the first Black woman to serve on the Supreme Court, and a campaign promise from President Joe Biden to make the highest court in the country better represent the demographics of the U.S.

Senator Cory Booker praised Judge Brown and hoped to see her on the Supreme Court
Senator Cory Booker praised Judge Jackson and hoped to see her on the Supreme Court. Photo Credit: Shutterstock

Senator Cory Booker, a Democrat from New Jersey – and the only Black member of the Senate judiciary committee – spoke to the audience of the significance of this hearing and brought the nominee to tears.

He compared her quest to sit on the Supreme Court to Harriet Tubman’s struggles from slavery to freedom and sought to remind the country that this process was not intended to be such an attack on her character.

“You are my star. You are my harbinger of hope,” he told her. “This country is getting better and better.”