Home General ‘Big win for Trump’ as Senate confirms Brett Kavanaugh to supreme court

‘Big win for Trump’ as Senate confirms Brett Kavanaugh to supreme court

by kenya-tribune
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The US Senate has voted to confirm President Donald Trump’s nominee for the Supreme Court, after weeks of rancorous debate.

The Senate backed Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination by 50 votes to 48.

Kavanaugh had been embroiled in a bitter battle to stave off allegations of sexual assault.

But after an 11th-hour investigation by the FBI into the allegations, enough wavering senators decided to back the nomination.

Ahead of the vote, hundreds of people protesting against Mr Kavanaugh’s nomination demonstrated at the US Capitol in Washington.

During the vote, other protesters shouted “shame” from the public gallery and Vice-President Mike Pence had to call for order to be restored.

Kavanaugh’s appointment is for life and he will strengthen conservative control of the nine-judge court, which has the final say on US law.

So what were the numbers in the Senate?

The upper house is split 51-49 in favour of the Republicans and the vote was largely along party lines. Mr Kavanaugh actually only needed a 50-50 vote, as that would have forced a tie-breaker in his favour from Mr Pence.

In the end, there was a two-vote margin.

The only party dissenters were Republican Senator Lisa Murkowski, who was a no voter, and Democrat Joe Manchin, who voted yes.

That should have meant a 51-49 tally, but the absence of Republican Steve Daines, a yes voter who was at his daughter’s wedding, altered the final tally.

Ms Murkowski opted instead to simply mark herself as “present”, leaving the final vote 50-48.

Read: Trump’s court nominee Brett Kavanaugh faces new sex allegation

Although Ms Murkowski had said Mr Kavanaugh was a “good man”, she also said he was “not the right person for the court at this time” and his “appearance of impropriety has become unavoidable”.

Joe Manchin is facing a difficult re-election campaign in West Virginia, a traditionally Republican state that Mr Trump won by a landslide. He said he “found Judge Kavanaugh to be a qualified jurist”.

There were shouts of “shame” from the public gallery as he voted yes.

Two Republican waverers, Susan Collins and Jeff Flake, finally decided to back the judge.

Also See: Senators get FBI report on Kavanaugh, Republicans push vote

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