Senators Tried To Stop Kamala Harris' Questions, But Nevertheless, She Persisted

Sen. Harris pressed on despite repeated attempts to quiet her.

During a tense exchange on Wednesday, California Sen. Kamala Harris pressed on after she was scolded for not being courteous during a line of questioning towards Dep. Attorney General Rod Rosenstein.

The moment came as Sen. Harris pressed Rosenstein to sign off on full independence for Special Counsel Robert Mueller in the Russia investigation, and Rosenstein appeared to filibuster her question. Harris, repeatedly stopping Rosenstein as he avoided the question, was then herself interrupted by both Sen. John McCain and Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Richard Burr.

Harris wanted Rosenstein to give her a yes or no answer — would he sign off for full independence? — but Rosenstein demurred, saying that his response was too complex. When Harris continued to insist that Rosenstein answer her question directly, yes or no, McCain interrupted with an appeal to the chairman to allow Rosenstein to finish his longer explanation. 

Nevertheless, Harris continued.


"Yes or no, sir," Harris pressed. She added, "Are you willing to do —"

"Will the senator suspend?" Burr interjected. He then said that the committee — Harris included "is on notice to provide the witnesses the courtesy" to answer the questions asked of them.

After some continued back and forth, Rosenstein went into a long-winded explanation that didn't address her question directly, as Harris predicted. 

She tried one last time: "So, is that a no?" Sen. Burr then called on the next senator to move the line of questioning along.

The moment produced strong reactions on Twitter. Some suggested that Harris would have received different treatment had she been a man.

Simultaneously, the moment drew comparisons to Elizabeth Warren, who was prevented from speaking on the Senate floor by House Majority leader Mitch McConnell in February. At the time, Warren was attempting to read a letter written by Coretta Scott King, the widow of Martin Luther King, Jr.

Warren responded to the scene around Harris on Twitter.

Despite the tense moment, Harris managed to get her point across and — consequently — had her exchange broadcasted all across the country.

Cover image via Shutterstock / DFree.


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