Anger over Brett Kavanaugh appointment

Monday, 08 Oct, 2018

Lisa Murkowski of Alaska was the only Republican vote against Kavanaugh's nomination, but chose to withdraw after presenting Montana Senator Steve Gaines' vote as it would not change the count.

Collins, a Republican, who provided a critical "yes" vote to confirm Kavanaugh, rebuked lawmakers' disapproval of Kavanaugh's testimony. Susan Collins, R-Maine, in the speech where she announced her support for Kavanaugh, tipping the Senate balance in his favor.

During the debate over Kavanaugh, Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer of NY said Trump and the GOP "conducted one of the least transparent, least fair, most biased processes" in history, and he predicted that it would drive more Democrats to the polls. Every voting Republican backed the 53-year-old conservative judge.

"Senator Murkowski is a Republican member of our conference in good standing".

The confirmation means Trump has succeeded in having his two picks seated on the court - tilting it decidedly to the right in a major coup for the Republican leader less than halfway through his term.

They appeared to have counted on delaying the confirmation process so that if the Senate majority flips to their side in the November elections, they can block him and temper Trump's future nominations.

It was the closest roll call to confirm a justice since 1881, when Stanley Matthews was approved 24-23, according to Senate records.

Within minutes, dozens of political and advocacy groups blasted out emailed reactions. "It's not going to be lost on anyone on the court that everybody is going to be watching the new court to see which issues they engage in, " said Paul Clement, solicitor general under President George W. Bush. "Women will not forget this".

"There was no corroboration on Brett Kavanaugh's bold assertion that he didn't do it", Hirono said.

Collins told Bash that while she found Ford's testimony "heart-wrenching", the fact that both Ford and Kavanaugh said they were "100 percent certain" of their statements meant that she had to look to the Federal Bureau of Investigation for additional corroborating evidence.

Ford testified in the Senate Judiciary Committee that Kavanaugh had drunkenly attacked her at a party when they were teenagers in the early 1980s.

Senators debated the decision before casting their vote, watched on by many in the public gallery.

Trump weighed in Saturday morning on behalf of the man he nominated in July.

Kavanaugh, a conservative jurist, fills the seat of Kennedy, a swing vote on the court.

Two further women came forward with sexual misconduct allegations dating back to the same decade. But the turmoil surrounding Kavanaugh has transformed the midterms into something bigger than Trump, with implications that could endure long after his presidency.

His nomination was greeted by staunch protest in the District with thousands of anti-Kavanaugh protesters swarming Capitol Hill over the past week. "Praying for them, praying for us and praying for the country".

While many Republicans said they were satisfied with the FBI probe, Democrats and Blasey Ford's lawyers called the investigation insufficient. "We didn't go on a search and destroy mission". Manchin, the only Democrat supporting the nominee, faces a competitive re-election race next month in a state Trump carried in 2016 by 42 percentage points. Some discussed how the confirmation felt as a blow for sexual assault victims speaking out.

Mr Kavanaugh denied the allegations and received continued backing from the president as well as vast protest from opponents.

"I was glad that he apologized to Amy Klobuchar in particular, " she said.

Hirono also sidestepped Bash's question on whether Michael Avenatti, who represents porn star Stormy Daniels, hurt the Democrats' arguments against Kavanaugh's confirmation by representing a third woman to make allegations of sexual misconduct against Kavanaugh.