Sen. Susan Collins Says She Doesn’t Believe Kavanaugh Was Ford’s Attacker

Sen. Susan Collins Says She Doesn’t Believe Kavanaugh Was Ford’s Attacker”

After weeks of controversy, the US Senate has begun the final vote on the confirmation of President Donald Trump's nominee to the Supreme Court, Brett Kavanaugh.

The confirmation marks a major victory for President Donald Trump, who will soon be able to take credit for appointing two conservative justices to the Supreme Court during his relatively brief time in office.

Justice Brett Kavanaugh became the newest associate justice of the Supreme Court when he was sworn in Saturday evening.

The nomination process has ripped open the scabs on the never-healed wounds of polarisation on the United States body politic exactly a month before the mid-term elections to Congress that can determine the future of Trump's presidency.

Hundreds of demonstrators protested on Capitol Hill, chanting "vote them out" and "November is coming".

However, despite Ford's insistence that Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her in the summer of 1982 at a small house party in suburban Maryland, Banks and Katz made no mention of Ford filing a police report in Montgomery County, Maryland, the jurisdiction where the alleged crime occurred.

Republicans control the Senate by a meager 51-49 margin, and announcements of support Friday from Republicans Jeff Flake of Arizona and Susan Collins of ME, along with Democrat Joe Manchin of West Virginia, locked in the needed votes.

Trump ordered the probe, but later complained that Senate Democrats were just trying to waste time.

"It certainly had a good impact for us", and added that the Democrat's tactics "have turned our base on fire".

Besides the accusations of sexual misconduct, another issue - abortion rights - mobilised the opposition to Kavanaugh.

It represents the culmination of a decades-long project by the conservative movement to construct a like-minded majority on the Supreme Court which has been a defining and unifying cause in successive congressional and presidential campaigns. "This is not a court of law", Hirono said.

President Trump said he is "100 percent" certain that Christine Blasey Ford named the wrong person when she accused Brett Kavanaugh of sexual assault in testimony during his Supreme Court nomination hearings.

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.

Christine Blasey Ford, with lawyer Debra S. Katz, left, answers questions at a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on Thursday, Sept. 27, 2018 on Capitol Hill. "She said that Dr Ford thinks that she was assaulted, which is even more insulting than saying that she gave a credible account".

He denied the accusations and launched an impassioned attack on his accusers, leading to fresh charges that he was temperamentally unsuited to the judgeship.

After the vote on Saturday, she voiced hope that Kavanaugh would work "to restore or build that public confidence".

As one of just two Republican women in the Senate who favour abortion rights - Collins is the other - and an opponent of the Republican push to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act a year ago, Murkowski was seen as one of a handful of senators who could vote either way on Kavanaugh, even before the allegations against him emerged publicly in September.

ALSO READ | Who is Brett Kavanaugh?

The only party dissenters were Republican Senator Lisa Murkowski, who had meant to vote no, and Democrat Joe Manchin, who voted yes.

The investigation was wrapped up in about five days and it convinced Flake to back Kavanaugh. "I believe she was and that that disgusting experience has upended her life, but it does not mean that Brett Kavanaugh was her assailant". He expressed empathy for sexual assault victims, but 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". Indeed, McConnell argued, Kavanaugh is "among the best the country has to offer" and "unquestionably deserves confirmation, and the country deserves such a Supreme Court justice".

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