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Tipsheet

Is Kamala Harris About to Get Kicked Off the Senate Judiciary Committee?

Democrat Senator Kamala Harris, who is clearly running for president in 2020, may not take her current seat on the Senate Judiciary Committee when the new Congress starts in January. She wants to stay, but new numbers for Republicans in the upper chamber put her seat at risk.

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According to the Washington Post, the Committee could shrink. This means Harris would be the first to go due to her status as the most junior member. 

Unless Democrats strike a deal, either with the Senate’s Republican majority or with fellow Democrats on the committee, numbers and seniority dictate that Harris will be out — and that has liberal groups scrambling to save her position.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) and Schumer, the minority leader, could agree to expand the number of Republicans on the panel, so that no Democrats are forced off — something Blumenthal said “magically” happened for him after Democrats lost the Senate majority in 2014.

There is little incentive for McConnell to accommodate a presumed Democratic star in the making, save for progressive groups promising a backlash if she is removed. Some Republican officials already believe the 21-member panel is too large, and with members Orrin G. Hatch (R-Utah) and Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) retiring, there is little reason for Republicans to expand their own ranks.

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Given her horrific performance at the Kavanaugh hearings and her comparison of Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents to the Klu Klux Klan, it wouldn't be much of a loss. The biggest blow will come to Harris personally since she's been using the position as a platform to grandstand against President Trump and to pump her name recognition ahead of a White House run.

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