Murkowski to vote 'present' on Kavanaugh as favor to absent colleague

Supreme Court Kavanaugh

President Donald Trump's embattled nominee to the Supreme Court Brett Kavanaugh on Friday cleared a major procedural hurdle on the Senate floor, making him just one step away from being confirmed, amid controversy over sexual abuse allegations against him.

The likelihood of Judge Kavanaugh winning a full Senate vote on Saturday appeared to increase after two Republicans whose backing will be essential gave a positive account of the Federal Bureau of Investigation inquiry.

Republicans have a 51-49 majority in the Senate and this razor-thin majority has carried the vote forward, despite two swing votes.

"I do not believe these charges can fairly prevent Judge Kavanaugh from serving on the court", Collins said.

Collins' speech was immediately interrupted by protesters in the Senate gallery, who chanted "vote no", indicative of the enormous pressure she faced to oppose Kavanaugh's nomination. Every voting Republican backed the 53-year-old conservative judge. That fury was reflected openly by thousands of boisterous anti-Kavanaugh demonstrators who bounced around the Capitol complex for days, confronting senators in office buildings and even reportedly near their homes.

And Trump told Kansas rallygoers that he will hold a ceremonial swearing-in for Kavanaugh at the White House Monday evening.

Rice has a home in ME, a source said, and her family has ties to the state: Her mother, an education policy expert who was instrumental in the creation of the Pell Grant, was born there. If there is a 50-50 tie, Vice President Mike Pence would break it in favor of Kavanaugh.

Mr Flake told reporters that unless "something big" changes, he will vote to confirm Judge Kavanaugh.

Judge Brett Kavanaugh testifies during the Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on his nomination be an associate justice of the Supreme Court of the United States, on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC, U.S., September 27, 2018.

Dybala's hat-trick steers Juventus in ECL
He doubled the lead after the half hour when he was left with the easy task of tucking in the rebound from Blaise Matuidi's saved shot.

Nadler said it would probably be hard to interview Kavanaugh if he was sitting on the Supreme Court.

That means Kavanaugh could be an associate justice of the U.S. Supreme Court by the end of the weekend.

In a Quinnipiac poll issued on Monday, 48 percent of Americans said that Kavanaugh should not be confirmed to the Supreme Court, while 42 percent said he should be confirmed.

"We will be ill-served in the long run if we abandon the presumption of innocence and fairness, tempting though it may be", she said.

With the political world holding its breath, Collins spoke of a lack of "corroborating evidence" to back up Ford's claims that Kavanaugh was the man who assaulted her more than three decades ago.

For weeks, Kavanaugh's future has hung in the balance during hours of hearings, FBI investigations and sexual assault allegations, which he has denied.

When Trump nominated Kavanaugh in July, Democrats leapt to oppose him, saying that past statements and opinions showed he'd be a threat to the Roe v. Wade case that assured the right to abortion.

The FBI investigated the allegations this week by Dr. Christine Blasey Ford that Judge Kavanaugh groped her and attempted to rape her when he was drunk at a high school party.

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