National Archives News

National Archives Records Related to Judge Brett M. Kavanaugh

The mission of the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) is to provide access to the permanent records of the Federal government, which include Presidential records from NARA’s Presidential Libraries.

President Donald Trump nominated Judge Brett M. Kavanaugh to the U.S. Supreme Court on July 9, 2018. NARA has permanent records related to Judge Kavanaugh because he served in the White House Counsel's Office and the White House Office of the Staff Secretary under the Administration of President George W. Bush, and he also served as an Associate Independent Counsel in the Office of Independent Counsel Kenneth W. Starr during the Administration of President William J. Clinton.

NARA is working on an expedited basis to release prioritized records related to Judge Kavanaugh, in accordance with the Presidential Records Act, the Federal Records Act, and the Freedom of Information Act, just as we have done with previous Supreme Court nominees. NARA holds several million pages of records related to Judge Kavanaugh, which is significantly more than for prior Supreme Court nominees who worked in the White House – for example, NARA processed and released roughly 70,000 pages on Justice Roberts and 170,000 pages on Justice Kagan.

Presidential records are being reviewed by NARA archivists and will be released on NARA’s George W. Bush Presidential Library's website, along with previously released records.

NARA has also begun to release records from the Office of Independent Counsel Starr on the National Archives website.

Additionally, correspondence between NARA and the Senate Judiciary Committee related to the overall process can be found in NARA's FOIA Electronic Reading Room.

Below is a general description of the bodies of records in NARA’s holdings related to Judge Kavanaugh.  Please note that because the vast majority of these records have not been reviewed for release, these counts are only rough approximations, and could include non-responsive, non-record, and duplicate materials.  In addition, these estimates do not include classified national security information and emails in which Kavanaugh is only mentioned. Note also that NARA roughly estimates that email records in these collections (which frequently include attachments) average approximately five pages per email:

  • Presidential Records:
    • Nomination records: 3,800 pages
    • White House Counsel records:
      • Paper files:  60,000 pages
      • Emails Kavanaugh sent, received, or was copied or blind copied on:  170,000 files
    • Staff Secretary records:
      • Paper files:  560,000 pages
      • Emails Kavanaugh sent, received, or was copied or blind copied on:  475,000 files
  • Federal Records:
    • Office of Independent Counsel Starr: 
      • Paper files: 20,000 pages

This page was last updated: August 2, 2018