Merrick Garland will finally face the Senate: Attorney general confirmation hearings start Monday


Merrick Garland is finally getting his day before the Senate.

Garland, President Joe Biden’s pick to be attorney general, will appear before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Monday for the first day of his confirmation hearings, scheduled to continue through the week.

The hearings were delayed amid some partisan squabbling while Democrats and Republicans struggled to come to a power-sharing agreement in the evenly divided Senate.

Those delays came after Garland was denied any hearings at all in 2016, when former President Barack Obama nominated the centrist judge to the Supreme Court following the death of Justice Antonin Scalia, the conservative stalwart.

The federal appeals court judge is expected to be confirmed swiftly — likely by the start of March — though he may face some uncomfortable grilling, primarily from the panel’s Republicans.

Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, the judiciary committee’s ranking Republican, has indicated that Garland will be quizzed about how he will handle the federal probe into Biden’s son, Hunter Biden, related to the younger Biden’s finances. Hunter Biden has disclosed that federal prosecutors are examining his “tax affairs.”

All-in-all, though, the hearings are likely to be low-drama. In a statement, Democratic Committee Chairman Sen. Dick Durbin of Illinois called Garland “a consensus pick who should be confirmed swiftly on his merits.”

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