Collins announces support for Kavanaugh, making chances of confirmation almost certain

Collins announces support for Kavanaugh, making chances of confirmation almost certain

Judge Kavanaugh denied the claim - and allegations that he drank to the point of memory loss at the time - in a feisty confrontation with senators.

A final confirmation vote is expected Saturday afternoon.

Murkowski said she would vote no on his confirmation.

The likelihood of Judge Kavanaugh winning a full Senate vote on Saturday appeared to increase after two Republicans whose backing will be essential gave a positive account of the Federal Bureau of Investigation inquiry.

The announcements by Republican Susan Collins of ME and Democrat Joe Manchin of West Virginia ended most of the suspense over a political battle that has transfixed the nation - though die-hard Democrats insisted on arguing through the night to a mostly empty Senate chamber.

Murkowski broke with her party as the only one of four key swing votes to oppose Kavanaugh's nomination. There are only six Republican women in the Senate.

Brett Kavanaugh's path to the US Supreme Court is all but assured after two senators said they will elect the conservative to the country's highest court. But somehow, Senate Judiciary Committee chairman Chuck Grassley (R-IA) - who has been instrumental in ramming through Kavanaugh's nomination - found a way to make things even worse.

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

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The servers had been compromised during manufacturing and the chips activated once they were up and running, it said. Apple said that it takes the allegations seriously and that there was no claim of customer data being affected.

"The facts presented do not mean that Professor Ford was not sexually assaulted that night or at some other time but they do lead me to conclude that the allegations failed to meet the more likely than not standard", she said.

A final vote on Kavanaugh's nomination is set to be held Saturday, but moments after Collins spoke, Sen.

He wrote: "Very proud of the U.S. Senate for voting "YES" to advance the nomination of Judge Brett Kavanaugh!".

Republicans have a 51-49 majority in the Senate.

The short tweet - which came less than an hour after Collins, a Maine Republican, announced she would vote to confirm Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court - caught national and state Democrats by surprise. "I have been wrestling to-to really try to know what is fair and what is right and the truth is none of this has been fair", Murkowski said Friday, adding, "I believe we are dealing with issues that are bigger than a nominee".

Collins noted that the Supreme Court confirmation process of Kavanaugh is akin to a "gutter-level political campaign" and a "dysfunctional circus" when it should be a "solemn occasion". Susan Collins, who sits next to Murkowski, leaned over and put her hand on the arm of Murkowski's chair.

For Kavanaugh to be defeated, two senators who voted to end debate on his nomination, effectively allowing it to proceed, would ultimately have to vote against him.

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