Murkowski to vote 'present' on Kavanaugh

U.S. Senate heads to final vote on Kavanaugh Supreme Court nomination

But emotional testimony Ford delivered to the Senate Judiciary Committee last week, and the judge's own explosive and partisan performance, raised doubts about his temperament and left his hopes hanging by a thread.

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Some 164 people were arrested, most for demonstrating on the Capitol steps, 14 for disrupting the Senate's roll call vote. "FBI investigation was done, is completed and Senate voted".

Asked about the #MeToo movement and her husband's recent comments about its potential impact on men, first lady Melania Trump weighed in on Kavanaugh's controversial nomination before Saturday's vote. Collins-a moderate Republican from Maine-said Kavanaugh was entitled to the "presumption of innocence" as the allegations against him were not substantiated with corroborating evidence. Meanwhile a Senate debate ensues on the Senate floor.

Jeff Flake is believed to have been what spurred him on to call for an Federal Bureau of Investigation probe into allegations that Kavanaugh sexually assaulted Dr. Christine Blasey Ford while they were both teenagers.

Trump said he watched the saga and watched Kavanaugh suffer "with false statements made about him, things that never happened".

"They are so many and we are so few".

There was enormous relief at the White House where Trump watched a vote that takes him one final step closer to becoming the Republican president who enshrined a conservative majority on the Supreme Court - an achievement that will elevate him in history. Support from Collins and Manchin would give Kavanaugh at least 51 votes.

In a much anticipated speech on the Senate floor Friday afternoon, Collins said that she believed that Ford was a survivor of sexual assault. Kavanaugh's nomination as a replacement for retiring justice Anthony Kennedy was controversial from the start - but the initial focus was exclusively on the conservative views held by the married father of two.




Pirro started the segment by congratulating the president on Kavanaugh's swearing-in then asked about the accusations and whether any of those who came forward or promoted "falsehoods" should suffer "consequences".

One lone Republican, Sen.

In a twist, Murkowski voted "present" Saturday as a courtesy to Republican Kavanaugh supporter Steve Daines, who was to walk his daughter down the aisle at her wedding in Montana. "It will not change the outcome of the vote". Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) voted no on the motion to cloture. It would be the closest roll call to confirm a justice since 1881, when Stanley Matthews was approved by 24-23, according to Senate records.

He said Saturday he thinks Republicans "are going to do incredibly well" in the elections after Kavanaugh's confirmation. White House Counsel Don McGahn, who helped salvage Kavanaugh's nomination as it teetered, sat in the front row of the visitors' gallery for the vote with deputy White House press secretary Raj Shah.

"We must always remember that it is when passions are most inflamed that fairness is most in jeopardy", said Collins, perhaps the chamber's most moderate Republican. "I think she feels like she did the right thing", Banks said.

The Senate vote-set to begin sometime after 3:30 pm (1930 GMT) -will bring an end to a raucous nomination process defined by harrowing testimony from a woman who says Kavanaugh tried to rape her when they were teenagers - and his fiery rebuttal.

Though they reached opposite conclusions, both women had faced similar political pressure heading into Friday's key vote on Kavanaugh's high court nomination.

On the other side, Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer of NY called the fight "a sorry epilogue to the brazen theft of Justice Scalia's seat".

Manchin released his statement declaring his support for Kavanaugh shortly after Collins finished her speech - and after Republicans had already secured enough votes to confirm the judge, meaning that Manchin would not be the deciding vote. "We have a lot of work to do".

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