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Opponents vow Sen. Collins will pay price for Kavanaugh vote

Opponents vow Sen. Collins will pay price for Kavanaugh vote”

Kavanaugh, 53, will solidify the nine-member Supreme Court's conservative majority.

He succeeds Anthony Kennedy, who retired, and is the second judge nominated by Trump to the Supreme Court, giving him an opportunity to put his right-wing seal on the court.

They appeared to have counted on delaying the confirmation process so that if the Senate majority flips to their side in the November elections, they can block him and temper Trump's future nominations.

But Kavanaugh's journey to the Supreme Court became a much rockier one in mid-September, when a California psychologist named Christine Blasey Ford accused Kavanaugh of sexually assaulting her in the early 1980s, when Blasey Ford and Kavanaugh were students at private schools in the Washington, D.C., suburbs.

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

She also alleged that at some parties, boys lined up by a bedroom to "gang-rape" incapacitated girls and claimed those in the lineup included Kavanaugh and Judge. Kavanaugh followed her with testimony that was often emotional or angry, as he forcefully declared his innocence and assailed the accusations against him as the product of an orchestrated effort by the left to torpedo his nomination.

There were shouts of "shame" from the public gallery as he voted yes.

The FBI conducted a supplemental investigation into Kavanaugh's background but found no one who could corroborate her account.

I am sad because even before the controversies about Judge Kavanaugh's past came to light, he struck me as a nominee whose views on issues like executive power and regulatory authority were so outside of the mainstream of judicial thought, and the views of the American public more generally, and given the current composition of the court, that he would likely move the court to the right to a degree that would damage the court's reputation and legitimacy to a degree that would impair its constitutional function for generations to come.

Regarding the decision not to ask the Federal Bureau of Investigation to interview Kavanaugh or Ford, McConnell said, "None of them wanted to do that".

The one exception is Alaska Senator Lisa Murkowski.

The two-vote margin of victory made it the closest Supreme Court confirmation vote since 1881 - and by far the most contentious since Clarence Thomas in 1991. In a speech on the Senate floor that lasted nearly 45 minutes, Collins defended Kavanaugh and his record and declared that she would support him.

Kavanaugh's nomination sparked protest across the Capitol, which continued Saturday.

"As a lawyer, I'm committed to the principle that our courts serve justice through the rule of law, not politics".

Before the vote, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, a Democrat from NY, urged Americans who were dissatisfied with the confirmation to go to the polls in November and "vote".

The upper house is split 51-49 in favour of the Republicans and the vote was largely along party lines.

She was torn after a process she said was neither fair to Kavanaugh nor satisfactory for victims of sexual assault.

Kavanaugh, shown here testifying to the Senate Judiciary Committee, has become the latest US Supreme Court justice.

The Senate voted 50-48 to approve Kavanaugh as more than 1,000 protesters rallied in Washington against a nominee who had to overcome questions over his candor, partisan rhetoric and lifestyle as a young man. She added that she is glad that the Senate voted, keeping her answers very general.

Yet with the confirmation of Judge Kavanaugh, Republicans will be enthused to turn out in greater numbers as well, pundits say - in elation at the confirmation, and also partly in a backlash to the #MeToo movement.

As for Justice Kavanaugh, he is expected to be on the bench Tuesday. Yet, we have studied the result of seven Federal Bureau of Investigation inquiries - which have found no evidence of misconduct.



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