Merrick Garland Recuses Himself from Overseeing Ethics Complaints Against Brett Kavanaugh

Chief Judge Merrick Garland of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit has recused himself from being involved in overseeing ethics complaints regarding Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, who has been accused of sexual misconduct.

It remains uncertain why Garland will not be involved in handling the ethics complaints, as it is customary for the chief judge of the circuit to handle ethics cases. However, chief justices may recuse themselves if “circumstances warrant disqualification.”

Judge Karen LeCraft Henderson is the second top judge on the court, and would continue to oversee the ethics case if Garland is disqualified. Henderson issued a statement Saturday morning that the public filed complaints to the D.C. Circuit, but acknowledged they did not relate to Kavanaugh’s conduct as a judge.

“After the start of Judge Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation hearings, members of the general public began filing complaints in the D.C. Circuit about statements made during those hearings,” Henderson said in a statement. “The complaints do not pertain to any conduct in which Judge Kavanaugh engaged as a judge. The complaints seek investigations only of the public statements he has made as a nominee to the Supreme Court of the United States.”

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SOURCE: The Washington Examiner, Diana Stancy Correll