GOP Senate could act on 2020 high-court nominee

The Supreme Court in Washington early Friday

The Supreme Court in Washington early Friday

Eight years ago, Republican leaders abandoned the Alaska senator after she lost to a tea party primary challenger.

Kavanaugh will be sworn in as an associate justice of the Supreme Court on Saturday by Chief Justice John Roberts and the man he will replace, the Court's crucial swing vote, Anthony Kennedy.

Former President George H.W. Bush tweeted support for Collins from Kennebunkport, praising her before the final vote for "political courage and class".

Kavanaugh, shown here testifying to the Senate Judiciary Committee, has become the latest US Supreme Court justice. Kavanaugh has denied the allegations. "Only this time, instead of drunk college kids, it is U.S. Senators who are deliberately ignoring his behavior", Ramirez said. She voted "present", balancing out Daines' absence. "I disagree that he's not the right guy at the right time". Susan Collins several times ahead of her announcement Friday that she would support Brett Kavanaugh's nomination to the Supreme Court - and he's been out of office for almost a decade.

Flake, R-Ariz., who has repeatedly battled Trump and will retire in January, said he'd vote for Kavanaugh's confirmation "unless something big changes". "I don't remember", Trump said, as the audience laughed and cheered. Ford's pained recounting of the alleged sexual assault she said happened while she and Kavanaugh were in high school and Kavanaugh's blistering denials gripped the nation as hours of testimony aired on national TV.

It was a signature moment in Murkowski's political career, which has spanned almost two decades.

Majority Leader Mitch McConnell described Kavanaugh as a "superstar". "It's been a seminal event leading into the fall election". And this is what she gave them in return.

Hundreds of protesters against Kavanaugh gathered on the grounds of the Capitol and at the Supreme Court. She initially thought Kavanaugh should withdraw from the proceedings.

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

Reese Witherspoon said she "can't wait for November" - adding the blue wave symbol for a vast victory for the Democrats. It was Kavanaugh's fiery testimony, charged with partisan accusations, that swayed her. The only way we can get people to do what we think they should do is because people respect us, " Justice Elena Kagan said.

"As I watch numerous Senators speak and vote on the floor of the Senate I feel like I'm right back at Yale where half the room is laughing and looking the other way. It's not so clear that you know going forward that that sort of middle position - it's not so clear whether we'll have it". "But I don't want to suggest that something that I have chosen not to make public, not to discuss, that that becomes an issue point for others". But he said that after factoring in the Federal Bureau of Investigation report, "I have found Judge Kavanaugh to be a qualified jurist who will follow the Constitution".

"We have a lot of women that are extremely happy - a tremendous number - because they're thinking of their sons, they're thinking of their husbands and their brothers and their uncles and others and women are, I think, extremely happy", he added.

But the Kavanaugh nomination has further poisoned already strained, partisan relations in the Senate. I think the most important thing the Senate is involved in is the personnel business.

When it was Murkowski's turn, she rose and practically whispered "no", returning to her chair and snot talking to any senator for another 10 minutes as she stared stone-faced at the front of the room.

Demonstrators began shouting "I do not consent" as the roll call on Kavanaugh began.

Later, Collins delivered a speech formalising her support for Kavanaugh.

When Murkowski finished, no one applauded. As she finished, her Republican colleagues stood and cheered. For 26 minutes she explained how she arrived at her vote.

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