US Senate confirms Brett Kavanaugh as Supreme Court justice

Monday, 08 Oct, 2018

At left are their daughters, Margaret, background, and Liza.

Even as Kavanaugh took his oath of office Saturday evening in a quiet private ceremony, not long after the narrowest Senate confirmation in almost a century and a half, protesters chanted outside the court building across the street from the Capitol.

When it was official, Trump delivered a double thumbs-up from his desk.

What has Mr Trump said? "Very happy about it".

But he also revealed something the public didn't know about him, which is that beneath the all-American image he tried to present up until the hearing, lurked an emotional bully that lacks the temper and personal conduct necessary to be a Supreme Court justice.

"In front of the MS audience, Trump had mimicked Ford's testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee, including the moment where she explained that there were certain details of the alleged sexual assault she couldn't remember".

Every voting Republican backed the 53-year-old conservative judge.

"We're very honored that he was able to withstand this terrible, frightful attack by the Democrats".

In the end, Republicans were able to use their monopoly on political power on Capitol Hill and the White House to muscle through the confirmation, which was almost derailed by Christine Blasey Ford's allegations that the judge assaulted her when they were teenagers in the 1980s.

He continued lashing out at Democrats when he rallied supporters in Topeka, telling them "radical Democrats" have become "an angry, left-wing mob" and "too unsafe and too extreme to govern".

Democrats argue that some of the same tactics that have helped energize Republican voters also motivate their base, particularly Trump's attacks on Ford.

"You don't hand matches to an arsonist and you don't give power to an angry left-wing mob".

The Democrats" "strategy to capitalize on the "Me Too' movement for the political purposes backfired on them", Republican strategist Alice Stewart said.

"Women were outraged at what happened to Brett Kavanaugh, outraged", Trump said. "It's what we do now", said the Schumer character. We've seen the numbers in the races shifting in our direction.

Two other women accused him in the media of sexual misconduct in the 1980s. Capitol Police said later in the day that 164 of them were arrested.

Ahead of the vote, hundreds of people protested against Mr Kavanaugh's nomination at the US Capitol in Washington.

In his praise of Kobach, Trump said he was a "tireless champion for border security", noting his close relationship with Kobach, who advised the president on immigration throughout the 2016 presidential election.

Trump had been widely denounced - even among some conservatives - for his public disparagement of Ford.

President Donald Trump called for tougher libel laws while railing against attorney Michael Avenatti in an interview with Fox News' Jeanine Pirro on Saturday.

Advisers and Senate leaders had urged Trump not to attack Ford publicly, anxious such a move would anger on-the-fence senators.

"I would say they should be held to the highest standard", Trump said.

"I have reservations about this vote given the serious accusations against Judge Kavanaugh and the temperament he displayed in the hearing", Manchin said.

In Kansas, Trump seized on the moment to skewer his opponents. Accusations from several women remain under scrutiny, and House Democrats have pledged further investigation if they win the majority in November. Both joined him on stage at the Expocentre to speak.

The dispute over Kavanaugh has added fuel to campaigning for the elections in November when Democrats will try to take control of Congress from the Republicans.

The Supreme Court battle has washed over the campaign in a way that no single issue has before, drowning out topics Democrats want to talk about (healthcare) or the ones Republicans are pushing (tax cuts and a rosy economy).

The Time's Up campaign praised a turning tide in U.S. attitudes, but said "it's heartbreaking but not surprising that this small group of largely white men made a decision that valued the career of one man above all else".