Protesters on Capitol steps as Kavanaugh vote draws near

Hannah Rogers
October 8, 2018

But Manchin said little Thursday and Friday to indicate what his final vote would be, after studying the Federal Bureau of Investigation report addressing allegations of sexual misconduct leveled against the nominee.

The senate is expected to confirm Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court on Saturday around 9pm United Kingdom time.

An appellate court judge on the District of Columbia circuit for the past 12 years, he pushed for the Senate vote as hard as Republican leaders - not just to reach this capstone of his legal career, but in fighting to clear his name.

Announcements by Republican Susan Collins of ME and Democrat Joe Manchin of West Virginia that they'll support the conservative jurist made Saturday's confirmation vote a formality, an anticlimactic finale to a battle that riveted the nation for almost a month.

Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell, (R-KY), enters the US Capitol before the vote for Judge Brett Kavanaugh to become a US Supreme Court justice in Washington, D.C. October 6, 2018. That would let Kavanaugh win by the same two-vote margin he'd have received had both senators voted.

During an interview Friday night, McConnell was asked if he knew he had the needed votes before filing for cloture.

"I believe that Judge Kavanaugh is a good man".

Rice tweeted a little later that she was "not making any announcements" but was "deeply disappointed" by Collins' vote. One woman held a sign saying "Predators Club" with pictures of Kavanaugh, Justice Clarence Thomas and President Donald Trump. In response to the allegations, the Senate Judiciary Committee heard testimony from Kavanaugh and Christine Blasey Ford, who alleges Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her when they were in high school.

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The outcome had remained in doubt, however, after one Republican, Lisa Murkowski, defied her party and voted against moving ahead.

The group of about 150 who somehow got around the newly-erected barricade were among about 2,000 protesters - a lot of them women - outside the building where senators were to vote mid-afternoon.

Brett Kavanaugh seems assured of surviving a Supreme Court nomination fight for the ages after two wavering senators said they'd back him. If there is a 50-50 tie, Vice President Mike Pence will cast the deciding vote.

Two different people were questioned about Judge Kavanaugh's calendar entry from 1982, which he used to refute her claims during last week's hearing.

Kavanaugh's confirmation leaves the Senate traumatized with Republicans and Democrats as estranged as at any time in recent memory, reflecting the cavernous divides in the country itself during a presidency that has ignited rare political passions.

Other Democrats on the committee have made similar statements, but constitutional law expert Jonathan Turley, however, said it would be a "dreadful idea" to investigate and possibly impeach Kavanaugh. A formal investiture ceremony will take place at a later date, the Supreme Court also said. Kavanaugh has denied the allegation.

Republican Sen. Lisa Murkowski, a moderate from Alaska, voted against advancing Kavanaugh in Friday morning's procedural vote, making Republican plans to confirm Kavanaugh more hard.

Their support makes Saturday's vote to confirm Kavanaugh an apparent formality after a battle that riveted the nation for almost a month. They said he also seemed ready to rule for Trump if federal authorities probing allegations of connections between the president's 2016 campaign and Russian Federation tried to pursue him in court.

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