Brett Kavanaugh moves towards Supreme Court confirmation after long, bitter fight

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Murkowski and Manchin were two of the final holdouts on how they would vote on Kavanaugh's confirmation, along with Republican Sens.

The stage was set for Saturday's final confirmation when the Senate ended debate on the nomination on Friday with a procedural 51-49 vote - a move cheered by Trump, who said he was "very proud".

Ford agreed to testify in a high-profile hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee on September 27.

It's all expected to conclude Saturday afternoon with a final roll call nearly solidly along party lines.

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) said that "We can salvage some decency here at the end", by rejecting Kavanaugh for the Supreme Court. However, based on all of the information I have available to me, including the recently completed Federal Bureau of Investigation report, I have found Judge Kavanaugh to be a qualified jurist who will follow the Constitution and determine cases based on the legal findings before him.

In a sense it would reflect a high water mark of the Trump presidency: Republican control of the White House, the Senate, the House of Representatives and the judiciary's top court.

The demonstrators shouted "shame" and "look at us" as Manchin spoke with reporters about his decision, which came shortly after Republican Sen.

Collins has never opposed a Supreme Court nominee, voting to confirm the past five justices from Republican and Democratic presidents.

After Collins' announcement that she is pledging her support, Sen.

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

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"He certainly didn't see the same thing I saw, which is someone who was seeking sincerely to defend his own record of public service, his own private conduct against great adversity, in circumstances in which he and his family have been dragged through the mud by no choice of their own", Lee said.

Asked about the #MeToo movement and her husband's recent comments about its potential impact on men, first lady Melania Trump weighed in on Kavanaugh's controversial nomination before Saturday's vote.

McConnell told The Associated Press in an interview that the "mob" of opposition - confronting senators in the hallways and at their homes - united his narrowly divided GOP majority as Kavanaugh's confirmation teetered and will give momentum to his party this fall. "We showed her all of the correspondence", Bank said. A few Democrats sat stone-faced nearby.

"The process that led to this vote today has been, in my view, a terrible process, a gut-wrenching process, where good people have been needlessly hurt, where a woman who never sought the public spotlight was, I think, cruelly thrust into the brightest of spotlights", Murkowski said.

"What I can speak to is when victims of sexual assault and violence go to their Congress people - when they go to their senators and they ask for their information to be confidential, I think that that's a request that needs to be respected", Katz said. She said on the Senate floor late Friday that Kavanaugh is "a good man" but his "appearance of impropriety has become unavoidable". Steve Daines of Montana, who supports Kavanaugh but was in Montana to walk his daughter down the aisle at her wedding. They also sought to paint him as a justice that would swing the court deeply to the right.

Moments after Collins pledged to back Kavanaugh, Democratic Senator Joe Manchin, in a tough race for re-election in West Virginia where Trump is popular, also declared his support.

That vote occurred amid smoldering resentment by partisans on both sides, on and off the Senate floor. Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) walks towards to the Senate chamber to listen to Sen.

He also says how senators vote on Judge Kavanaugh will likely play a part in the outcome of that election.

During the controversial speech, Trump mocked Ford and mimicked her, claiming her allegations against Kavanaugh lacked sufficient detail.

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