Murkowski to vote no on Kavanaugh

Kavanaugh is the kind of nonpartisan judge we need now

On Friday, the Republican senator affirmed she'd vote against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, saying she made her decision based on "issues. bigger than a nominee." Sen. And Murkowski announced Friday night that she will not support Kavanaugh during the final vote but will ask to be recorded as "present" as a courtesy to another GOP senator who will be away from D.C. because of his daughter's wedding.

That could require holding the vote open to give Mr Daines time to return to Washington from Montana.

Injecting even more uncertainty into the process is the fact that Republican Sen.

Republicans hold a 51-49 majority in the Senate, meaning that if all Senate Democrats oppose Mr Kavanaugh, Mr Trump can not afford to lose more than one Republican vote for his nominee, with Vice President Mike Pence casting a tiebreaking vote. Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, said she would oppose Kavanaugh.

In explaining her vote to reporters, Murkowski said on Friday that she had not come to a decision on how she would vote until walking into the Senate floor that morning.

If Democrats flip the House in November, which, according to polling, looks quite likely, some have indicated they will support an investigation into Kavanaugh and could draft articles of impeachment.

The chamber voted 51-49 to move forward with President Donald Trump's nominee.

A final confirmation vote was set for around 3:30 p.m. (1930 GMT) on Saturday. In her former role as dean of Harvard Law School, she hired Kavanaugh to teach there.

Collins told fellow senators that Christine Blasey Ford's dramatic testimony last week describing Kavanaugh's alleged 1982 assault was "sincere, painful and compelling". But the case against Kavanaugh had long since been taken over by allegations that he sexually abused women decades ago - accusations he emphatically denied.

"What we know for sure is the Federal Bureau of Investigation report did not corroborate any of the allegations against Judge Kavanaugh", McConnell said. "The allegations fail to meet the more likely than not standard". Manchin added, "I do hope that Judge Kavanaugh will not allow the partisan nature this process took to follow him onto the court".

Senator Susan Collins - a maverick member of Trump's Republican party - and her Democrat counterpart Joe Manchin said allegations that Brett Kavanaugh had sexually assaulted a fellow teenager almost four decades ago were unproven.

Flake said he would vote against Kavanaugh if the investigation found the allegations were true or that the nominee lied during his confirmation hearing. "From their own public statements, we knew that to be false, and nothing in this report changes that". "I bet he had another press release ready to go if Collins went the other way".

Capping a suspenseful day on Friday, Republican Senator Susan Collins of Maine declared on the Senate floor, "I will vote to confirm Judge Kavanaugh".

Getty Joe Manchin voted to advance the Kavanaugh nomination to a full vote and limit debate. Republican Morrisey has been vocal in recent days about Manchin's indecisiveness regarding Kavanaugh. As moderates who support abortion rights, their joint opposition could have been enough to sink Kavanaugh, whose nomination was thrust into uncertainty following sexual assault allegations.

"I believe that Brett Kavanaugh is a good man, I believe he is a good man", she said.

"This has truly been the most hard ... decision that I've ever had to make", she said.

The other senators who have been closely watched since it was not known how they would vote - Republican Sen. 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.

Manchin, like Collins, also has split with his party from time to time. Democrats say the interviews, which they originally requested, are incomplete and inconclusive.

Had the vote fallen short, it would have thrown a major blow to the nomination and throw the possibility of confirmation into serious doubt.

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