WASHINGTON (WOWO): Despite fierce opposition from Democrats, Republicans in the U.S. Senate voted to confirm President Donald Trump’s appointment of U.S. Appeals Court Judge Brett Kavanaugh to the United States Supreme Court today on a 50-48 vote.
The vote was nearly strictly along party lines, with Democratic Senator Joe Manchin crossing party lines to vote in favor of the confirmation. Find a full breakdown here. Vice President Mike Pence presided over the vote.
Kavanaugh, who has repeatedly and strongly denied allegations of sexual misconduct and assault from three women – chief among them Palo Alto University Professor Christine Blasey Ford, who testified before lawmakers on September 27th that Kavanaugh had drunkenly assaulted her when they were both in high school – will replace retired Associate Judge Anthony Kennedy on the Court. Kennedy retired on July 31st.
Ford has announced she will no longer pursue her allegations against Kavanaugh.
NEW: Christine Blasey Ford has no further plans to pursue her sexual misconduct allegations against Brett Kavanaugh, according to her attorneys – ABC
— Breaking911 (@Breaking911) October 6, 2018
The situation has galvanized both Republicans and Democrats. Republicans have cited seven FBI investigations into Kavanaugh and his background, saying none have found any evidence of wrongdoing, while Democrats claim the latest investigation was limited in scope and have pointed to Ford’s “powerful” testimony and a polygraph exam she reportedly took and passed on her allegations, although that test has lately come into question.
The Supreme Court was one of Trump’s biggest lynchpins of his 2016 Presidential campaign. Kavanaugh is the second Trump appointee to the Court, following Neil Gorsuch last year.
The Senate is ready to vote. A protestor is heard shouting: “I do not consent!”
— USA TODAY (@USATODAY) October 6, 2018
According to Fox News, at least 1,000 protesters demonstrated in front of the Capitol building in the hours leading up to the vote. President Trump considered at least a portion of them to be “troublemakers” and “paid actors.”
The very rude elevator screamers are paid professionals only looking to make Senators look bad. Don’t fall for it! Also, look at all of the professionally made identical signs. Paid for by Soros and others. These are not signs made in the basement from love! #Troublemakers
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 5, 2018
Minority Leader Senator Chuck Schumer, in the moments before the vote, called Kavanaugh unfit for the appointment and criticized Republicans, saying they “shrouded the truth” about “a truly flawed nominee.” He also called upon those upset with the confirmation to vote against Republicans in November.