White House is 'confident' nominee Brett Kavanaugh will be confirmed

Police officers lead several protesters away from Flake's office Friday after the Senate cloture vote

Trump congratulated the Senate on "confirming our GREAT NOMINEE". and says he will sign Kavanaugh's Commission of Appointment and swear him in later today. During her testimony before the Senate more than a week ago, Ford told Sen.

Donald Trump has congratulated the U.S. senate following the win.

Kavanaugh's opponents raised concerns that he'd push the court further right, including possible sympathetic rulings for Trump. Kavanaugh has denied the allegations against him.

"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 said.

Collins told fellow senators that Christine Blasey Ford's dramatic testimony last week describing Kavanaugh's alleged 1982 assault was "sincere, painful and compelling".

"We must always remember that it is when passions are most inflamed that fairness is most in jeopardy", said Collins, perhaps the chamber's most moderate Republican.

Just hours before the vote, scores of protesters broke through barricades and staged a raucous sit-in protest on the US Capitol steps, just feet away from the imposing doors to the Rotunda.

While Collins acknowledged that Blasey Ford's testimony was honest, painful and compelling, and that the accuser is a sexual assault survivor, she added that "I do not believe that these charges can fairly prevent Judge Kavanaugh from serving on the court".

Her vote is disappointing enough, but her speech was a giant middle finger to all survivors of sexual assault.

Manchin is in a tight race for re-election in his home state, where President Donald Trump beat Democrat Hillary Clinton by 42 percentage points in 2016.

"And my heart goes out to anyone who has experienced any type of sexual assault in their life".

"I think having Judge Kavanaugh on the court would make the split legitimacy issue even worse, said Rick Hasen, an election law professor at the University of California-Irvine".

As protesters in a Capitol Hill hallway shouted, "Shame!"

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President Trump beamed over Kavanaugh's confirmation as he belittled the demonstrators.

Three female GOP senators - Jodi Ernst of Iowa, West Virginia's Shelley Moore Capito and Cindy Hyde-Smith of MS, sat directly behind Collins as she spoke.

In theory, Kavanaugh could be confirmed, sworn in and sitting on the mahogany bench in the traditional black justice's robe by Tuesday, when the court is next in session. A few Democrats sat stone-faced nearby.

A Democratic Senator, Joe Manchin, who represents West Virginia, a heavily pro-Trump state, voted for Kavanaugh.

Collins, who voted earlier to move Kavanaugh's nomination to a final vote, was one of four lawmakers who had not revealed their decisions until Friday. "And that is hard".

Republican Senator Jeff Flake of Arizona and Susan Collins of ME cast their votes in favour of Kavanaugh. Steve Daines, R-Mont., who is attending his daughter's wedding in Montana.

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer called the nomination "one of the saddest moments in the history of the Senate", and said, "this chapter will be a flashing red warning light of what to avoid". Similarly, Flake suggested he would vote "yes" for Kavanaugh "unless something big changes". Vice President Pence, presiding over the Senate, began Saturday's final vote by reminding people gathered in the gallery that "expressions of approval or disapproval are not permitted" there.

"An FBI investigation that did not include interviews of Dr Ford and Judge Kavanaugh is not a meaningful investigation in any sense of the word", they said in a statement quoted in USA media. But Democratic leader Chuck Schumer of NY forecast gains for his party instead.

Furthermore, the dispute over Kavanaugh has added fuel to campaigning for the elections in November when Democrats will try to take control of Congress from the Republicans.

"Women were outraged at what happened to Brett Kavanaugh, outraged", Trump said. Two other women also came forward with sexual misconduct allegations against Kavanaugh.

Several polls show that Republican enthusiasm about voting, which had lagged behind, jumped after the Kavanaugh hearing last week.

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.

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