Mitch McConnell dodges question on Supreme Court nomination in 2020 election

08 October, 2018, 01:35 | Author: Courtney Perry
  • TOPEKA KS- OCTOBER 06 U.S. President Donald Trump gestures while speaking to supporters during a rally at the Kansas Expocenter

The Senate voted Saturday to confirm Brett M. Kavanaugh to the United States Supreme Court, following contentious and heated hearings into allegations of sexual assault that sharply divided the Senate and the nation.

Collins was viewed as a potential swing vote for a Supreme Court nominee whose path to confirmation was shaken by sexual misconduct allegations made by three women including Christine Blasey Ford, who accused Kavanaugh of trying to rape her when he was in high school.

"There's only ever been one justice that's been impeached, and I think talking about it at this point isn't necessarily healing us and moving us forward", said Mr. Coons.

While McConnell said he appreciates Manchin's support, he also pointed out that he is "still a Democrat".

Trump, who called Kavanaugh to congratulate him on Saturday, said he was "100%" certain that Ford named the wrong person in accusing the judge.

Trump continued lashing out at Democrats when he rallied supporters in Topeka, telling them the opposition party conducted a "shameless campaign of political and personal destruction" against Kavanaugh. In the end, there was indeed a two-vote margin, the closest nomination vote since 1881. But other accusations and rumours were circling as voting was delayed for an additional FBI investigation.

The intense debate over sexual misconduct allegations against Kavanaugh gripped the American public for weeks, bringing protesters out in force on Capitol Hill and across the country, including near the homes of lawmakers.

He was elevated from the lifetime appointment he already held as a judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit.

The Senate voted 50 to 48, mostly along party lines.

During a rally in MS last week, Trump had mimicked Ford's testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee, in which she told lawmakers there were details of the alleged sexual assault she couldn't remember.


"We'll see if there is a vacancy in 2020", he said.

"There's nothing quite like a good old-fashioned Supreme Court fight to polarise the electorate - and that's what we've observed in the past few weeks", said David Wasserman, House editor of the nonpartisan Cook Political Report.

Kavanaugh was sworn in as a justice on Saturday evening, in Washington, DC, after an extraordinarily fraught nomination that sparked angry protests, nailbiting votes, and a national reckoning about sexual assault allegations and who should be believed.

Flake and Collins voted in favour of Kavanaugh's confirmation, while Murkowski opposed it but asked to be recorded as "present".

Kavanaugh is President Donald Trump's second Supreme Court appointee - Neil Gorsuch was the first - and locks in for now a 5-4 conservative majority. Citing the Democrats on the Judiciary Committee and "the virtual mob that assaulted us in the course of this process", McConnell said "they've managed to deliver the only thing that we had not been able to figure out how to do, which was to get our folks fired up".

He denied the allegations, but almost all Senate Democrats voted against his confirmation.

He said Saturday he thinks Republicans "are going to do incredibly well" in the midterm elections after Kavanaugh's confirmation.

"As I watch numerous Senators speak and vote on the floor of the Senate I feel like I'm right back at Yale where half the room is laughing and looking the other way".

In the meantime, the focus will be on the court's new majority's willingness to take on controversial issues.

"I have great respect for Susan Collins, and I always have", he added. I saw him rule in favor of criminal defendants who were unsympathetic. All these angry people know that these people sitting in the Senate are making these decisions.

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