Jersey pols react to Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh

Judge Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination to the Supreme Court has prompted harsh words from both of New Jersey’s U.S. senators.

Ahead of what’s expected to be a bruising confirmation battle, Sen. Cory Booker is calling on his Judiciary Committee colleagues to delay consideration of any nominee to replace Justice Anthony Kennedy until Special Counsel Robert Mueller finishes his investigation.

“His nomination should be a non-starter for every member of the Senate concerned about the integrity of the special counsel’s investigation,” Booker said in a statement.

Sen. Bob Menendez called a vote to confirm Kavanaugh, “a vote to make abortion illegal, end protections for patients with pre-existing conditions, and further rig our justice system in favor of rich and powerful corporate interests.”

Republican Senate candidate Bob Hugin, who is challenging Menendez, calls Kavanaugh highly qualified, but issued a statement saying he’d reserve judgement until he’s done his own research.

Kavanaugh, 53, is a former law clerk for Justice Kennedy and currently serves on the Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit. While Kennedy was the court’s swing vote on issues like abortion and gay rights, Kavanaugh is considered to be solidly conservative. He also has taken an expansive view of executive power and has favored limits on investigating the president.