Supreme Court confirmation hearings have an interesting biographical feature: before nominees even say a word, many words are said about them. This feature— which has been on prominent display in the confirmation hearings of Judge Brett Kavanaugh—is a product of how each senator on the confirmation committee is allowed to make an opening statement. Some of these statements are, as Robert Bork remembers from his own confirmation hearing, “lavish in their praise,” some are “lavish in their denunciations,” and some are “lavish in their equivocations.”1 The result is a disorienting kind of biography by committee, one which produces not one all-encompassing narrative—with tensions reconciled, discrepancies explained, and the presentation of a coherent, if complex, portrait of the nominee—but rather several competing biographies, many of which directly war with each other.
Barry, Patrick. "Sites of Storytelling: Supreme Court Confirmation Hearings." Ind. L. J. Online Supplement 94 (2018): 1-12.