Senate Judiciary Committee Hearings for Supreme Court Nominations: Historical Overview and Data [April 13, 2016] [open pdf - 209KB]
"After a President submits a Supreme Court nomination to the Senate, the Judiciary Committee assumes the principal responsibility for investigating the background and qualifications of each Supreme Court nominee. Since the late 1960s, the Judiciary Committee's consideration of a Supreme Court nomination typically has consisted of three distinct stages--(1) a pre-hearing investigative stage, followed by (2) public hearings, and concluding with (3) a committee decision as to whether to recommend approval of the nomination by the full Senate. This CRS [Congressional Research Service] Insight provides an historical overview of the second stage of this process--public hearings on nominations submitted to the Senate. As of this writing, Senate debate about Merrick Garland's nomination to the Supreme Court has focused, in part, on whether to hold committee hearings for the nomination. Note that this Insight does not take a position related to this ongoing debate."
CRS Insight, IN10476
Federation of American Scientists: http://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/index.html