Kavanaugh squeaked by with a 51 to 49 vote.
Of the three on-the fence Republicans, Sen. Susan Collins and Sen. Jeff Flake gave Kavanaugh a thumbs up, while Sen. Lisa Murkowski voted on on moving forward. Dem Sen. Joe Manchin from West Virginia, aka Trump country, was the only Democrats to vote to move ahead with tomorrow’s final vote.
Before taking the vote, the ranking members of the Senate Judiciary Committee; Sen Chuck Grassley and Sen. Dianne Feinstein addressed the chamber, followed by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.
The procedural vote triggers 30 more hours of debate. That said, senators are expected to hit “repeat” on their Kavanaugh votes tomorrow, so put your money on Kavanaugh being seated.
So, when Collins announced she would vote “yes” to advance Kavanaugh’s bid, teasing she would give her final rose later today at 3 PM ET as Schumer was speaking, she effectively stole the spotlight from the top Democrat. Schumer had implored the Senate to “salvage some decency here at the end”…”reject this nomination and asked the president to send another name…for the sake of the senate and of the Supreme Court and of America.”
Today’s vote came the morning after Wall Street Journal published an op-ed penned by Kavanaugh in which he attempted to wind back what pundits are calling his Matt Damon Problem, telling “readers,” aka senators, to forget his partisan, sexist rant at last Thursday’s hearing, parodied by Damon on SNL, in which he accused Democrat senators of a “hit” to exact revenge for the Clintons and bragged “I like beer” way too many times for comfort.
Kavanaugh, in the op-ed, vowed to be “even-keeled” hereafter and that “going forward you can count on me.”