Delaware Democratic Sen. Chris Coons asked Kavanaugh whether he would vote to overturn Morrison v. Olson, a 1988 Supreme Court decision which would upheld the constitutionality of creating an independent counsel under the 1978 Ethics in Government Act. The law expired in 1999, and now special counsels are governed by Justice Department regulations.
Kavanaugh told a conservative group in 2016 that he wanted to “put the final nail in the coffin” of Morrison v. Olson. Coons asked whether Kavanaugh would vote to overturn Morrison v. Olson, and whether he believed a special counsel is “fireable at will” of the president.
Kavanaugh declined to answer, saying that he could not weigh in about a hypothetical future case.
However, Kavanaugh told Republican Sen. Ben Sasse that no president had “immunity” from being charged for a civil or criminal crime. He said that the important question was when charges against the president should be brought — while he or she is in office, or after he or she leaves office.