Kavanaugh steps away from being confirmed as US Supreme Court judge

Cheryl Sanders
October 6, 2018

President Donald Trump is praising the Senate for pushing Kavanaugh past a key procedural hurdle.

But Collins, a moderate, pro-choice lawmaker from ME, said Kavanaugh was entitled to the "presumption of innocence" as the allegations against him lacked corroborating evidence.

Republican Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, a fellow moderate and friend of Collins, has indicated that she will vote no, calling Kavanaugh "a good man" but maybe "not the right man for the court at this time".

Koegler said he had a copy of a June 29 email thread where Ford identified her alleged assaulter as President Trump's "favorite for SCOTUS".

Other vulnerable Senate Democrats such as Sens.

Kavanaugh's path to the court seemed unfettered until mid-September, when Ford accused him of drunkenly sexually assaulting her in a locked bedroom at a 1982 high school gathering.

"Nevertheless", Collins continued, "fairness would dictate that the claims at least should meet a threshold of more likely than not as our standard".

Collins told a rapt Senate that she does not believe that sexual assault allegations against Kavanaugh rise to a level to "fairly prevent" him from serving on the high court.

Collins joined Republican Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia, a state Trump won big.

Outside, protesters shouted "shame on you" as Manchin spoke to reporters about his decision.

During the Senate Judiciary Committee's hearings on Kavanaugh's nomination, Republican Senator Jeff Flake was confronted by a survivor of sexual assault, who implored Flake not to support the nominee. This is what I've been wrestling with'.

Kavanaugh's confirmation would ensure a conservative majority on the court for years and perhaps decades to come - and hand Trump a huge political victory.

Given that Republicans have a razor-thin margin of control in the Senate, the party can potentially only afford another defection if it wants to confirm Judge Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court - assuming the two swing senators vote the same on Saturday. If a simple majority of the upper chamber votes in favor, the Senate will be able to advance to a final confirmation vote as early as Saturday. To vote to confirm Kavanaugh, you would have to be confident that he wouldn't abuse his power.

A week after a televised Senate Judiciary Committee hearing at which Mr Kavanaugh and Ms Ford transfixed the nation, the Capitol campus remained a stew of tension as the election-season cliff-hanger neared its conclusion. There's one reason it was worth it: "The American people learned something".

Collins took pains to say she believes Ford suffered a sexual assault that "has upended her life", but said she was not convinced Kavanaugh was the culprit. "I know that it's disturbing that she's the only one willing to vote no". This is ranking member of the Senate Judiciary Committee Dianne Feinstein. That is typically the case in the Senate these days.

White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders thanked Collins for "standing by your convictions and doing the right thing", while former president George HW Bush saluted her "political courage and class".

"Dr. Ford is prepared to provide those documents to the Federal Bureau of Investigation when she is interviewed", Ford attorneys Debra Katz and Lisa Banks wrote to Grassley on October 3.

"I was very emotional last Thursday, more so than I have ever been", Kavanaugh wrote.

Other reports by iNewsToday