[JURIST] The US Senate Judiciary Committee [official website] completed its questioning of Supreme Court nominee Judge Samuel Alito [official profile; JURIST news archive] on Thursday, the fourth day of its confirmation hearings for the Third Circuit jurist. Alito, who appears headed for approval, declared his admiration for his predecessor, Justice Sandra Day O'Connor [OYEZ profile], praising "her integrity and her dedication to the case-by-case process of adjudication." Before questioning began, committee chairman Sen. Arlen Specter (R-PA) [official website] said that an overnight search of Concerned Alumni of Princeton [Wikipedia backgrounder] records uncovered no evidence that Alito was an active member of the controversial Ivy League alumni group upon which Democrats focused some of their questions [JURIST report] Wednesday. Meanwhile, Sen. Joseph Biden (D-DE) [official website], a member of the committee, denounced the nomination hearing process [AP report] in a TV interview Thursday morning, saying it served no purpose because nominees dodge the panel's questions and suggesting that instead, nominations should proceed directly to the Senate floor for a vote. The confirmation hearings are now concluding with testimony from outside witnesses. AP has more.