Kavanaugh on track for U.S. Supreme Court

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Kavanaugh on track for U.S. Supreme Court
Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh secures the votes needed, including a ‘yes’ vote from key swing Republican senators Susan Collins and Jeff Flake, as well as Democrat Joe Manchin, to be confirmed in a final vote on Saturday. Andy Sullivan reports.
“On this vote the yeas are 51, the nos are 49. The motion is agreed to.”

After a bitter drawn-out fight that divided the nation, the U.S. Senate on Friday moved Brett Kavanaugh one step closer to the Supreme Court, setting the stage for a historic final vote this weekend.

(SOUNDBITE) (English) ANDY SULLIVAN, POLITICS REPORTER, SAYING:

“I’m Andy Sullivan in Washington, where it now appears all but certain for President Trump’s Supreme Court pick. The Senate voting 51 to 49 to advance his nomination. A small but crucial group of lawmakers who’d been on the fence now coming out and saying they will support him putting Kavanaugh on a glidepath to the nation’s highest court.”

A week ago Kavanaugh’s bid appeared very much in doubt as he faced accusations of sexual misconduct from several women, including psychology professor Christine Blasey Ford.

Kavanaugh also faced questions about his temperament and his honesty during his politically charged hearings.

But by Friday afternoon, the turnaround was clear… Republican Susan Collins of Maine added her name to the majority of Senate Republicans who are supporting Kavanaugh.

Republican Jeff Flake of Arizona and Democrat Joe Manchin of West Virginia — also saying they’ll vote yes, giving Kavanaugh the 51 votes he needs to be confirmed.

This despite a no vote from Republican Lisa Murkowski – who broke with her party, saying Kavanaugh is the wrong man for theses times….

Kavanaugh’s confirmation would be a big victory for Trump just weeks before the November congressional elections — giving the court a 5 to 4 conservative majority for legal battles ahead — on abortion, immigration, and transgender rights.

(SOUNDBITE) (English) ANDY SULLIVAN, POLITICS REPORTER, SAYING:

“This started out as a debate over judicial philosophy — now it’s turned into a referendum on the me too movement — galvanizing women who see it as a reflection of their own experiences with sexual harassment. Trump has come down firmly on the other side — saying he’s worried the movement is unfairly targeting men. It’s looking like Trump will come out the victor in this case — but the scars from this confirmation battle are sure to linger for years to come.”

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