While the vote was not necessarily indicative of the final confirmation vote, it moved him one step closer to sitting on the highest court in the land, with three out of four key undecided senators voting "yes" to advance the nomination. A group of them climbed the Capitol steps, and some were led away by police.
Republican Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, a fellow moderate and a friend of Collins, became the only Republican to say she opposed Kavanaugh. The Senate Judiciary Committee says the Federal Bureau of Investigation also interviewed two alleged eyewitnesses to the incident named by Ramirez and one of her college friends.
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) said that "We can salvage some decency here at the end", by rejecting Kavanaugh for the Supreme Court.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said he never considered urging the White House to withdraw Brett M. Kavanaugh's nomination to the Supreme Court and called opposition to the judge a "great political gift" for Senate Republicans in next month's midterm elections. "Juxtapose that with North Dakota, where the democratic incumbent senator is down 11 points, I think the state is pretty much in favor of President Trump's nominee", said Price.
Trump also spoke with Vice President Pence, Sen.
The announcements Friday by Republican Susan Collins of ME and Democrat Joe Manchin of West Virginia came after weeks of shocking accusations, hardball politics and Capitol protests.
Koegler said in a signed declaration that Ford, a Palo Alto University professor, told him about the alleged assault in 2016, around the time former Stanford University student Brock Turner was sentenced for raping an unconscious woman. And while the official vote has yet to take place on the Senate floor, her statement is an indicator that Kavanaugh will likely be confirmed-it means the Republicans will most likely have the majority they need.
"An FBI investigation that did not include interviews of Dr. Ford and Judge Kavanaugh is not a meaningful investigation in any sense of the word", they said in a statement quoted in USA media. A final vote on Judge Kavanaugh's nomination is expected as early as 3:30 p.m. Saturday.
On the other side, Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer of NY called the fight "a sorry epilogue to the brazen theft of Justice Scalia's seat".
"This nominee was interviewing for a job in front of the American people, and he was belligerent, evasive and aggressive", she said.
A recent NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist poll showed in fact that the Republicans have narrowed the enthusiasm gap with Democrats in the past few weeks.
Even so, Collins said she hopes the ugly fight over Kavanaugh's confirmation will raise awareness of the pervasiveness of sexual assault. Steve Daines of Montana, who supports Kavanaugh but was in Montana to walk his daughter down the aisle at her wedding. They said he'd push the court farther right, including possible sympathetic rulings for Trump.
"My heart goes out to anyone who has experienced any type of sexual assault in their life", Manchin said.
The first lady also would not say if she believed Ford's allegations against Kavanaugh.
That vote occurred amid smoldering resentment by partisans on both sides, on and off the Senate floor.
"The process that led to this vote today has been, in my view, a frightful process, a gut-wrenching process, where good people have been needlessly hurt, where a woman who never sought the public spotlight was, I think, cruelly thrust into the brightest of spotlights", Murkowski said.
"But Democrats had pointed to not only the sexual assault allegations, which they described" but also questions about Kavanaugh's temperament during the hearing last week and whether he had lied about his drinking during high school and college, and what certain references in his high school yearbook meant. "What she did was to come forward and testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee and agree to cooperate with any investigation by the FBI and that's what she sought to do here", Katz said.