Lawmakers To Trump: ‘let Us Handle’ Kavanaugh Allegations
Many Republican senators have become more cautious or fallen silent altogether while the nomination twists in the wind, content to let Trump, McConnell and Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, take on the roles of Kavanaugh’s chief public defenders.
While much of the media attention has focused on four Republican senators Jeff Flake of Arizona, Susan Collins of Maine, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, and Bob Corker of Tennessee that’s because they have, in various ways, indicated discomfort with moving toward a vote on Kavanaugh before hearing from Ford.
What’s clear is that he doesn’t have the 50 votes needed for the confirmation to be considered in the bag. The key questions are how far short is he right now, and what it would take for him to secure the remaining GOP senators amid the allegations.
“Heres the problem for Republicans,” Amanda Carpenter, a former Cruz aide and author wrote on Twitter. “Who is happy about moving forward? Who is willing to tank him? Its a dead zone.”
On a political level, that’s less of a conundrum for the Republican senators who occupy relatively safe seats and have no presidential ambitions. For them, a backlash from conservative voters is a much bigger fear than the possibility of alienating moderates. They don’t need to be told that they could face primary challengers if they anger the GOP activists, and that means a vote for Kavanaugh is the best outcome even if the nomination fails on the Senate floor.
Brett Kavanaugh Supreme Court Nomination
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On July 9, 2018, PresidentDonald Trump nominated Brett Kavanaugh for Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States to succeed retiring Justice Anthony Kennedy. When nominated, Kavanaugh was a judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, a position he was appointed to in 2006 by President George W. Bush.
The Senate Judiciary Committee questioned Judge Kavanaugh and heard witness testimonies concerning his nomination to the Supreme Court over the course of a four-day hearing, September 47, 2018. Several days later, it was revealed that Christine Blasey Ford had written a letter to Senator Dianne Feinstein in July accusing Kavanaugh of sexual assault while they were both in high school in 1982. The Committee postponed its vote and invited both Kavanaugh and Blasey Ford to appear at public hearing. In the interim, two other women, Deborah Ramirez and Julie Swetnick, accused Kavanaugh of separate past instances of sexual assault.
Both Kavanaugh and Blasey Ford testified before the Committee on September 27; the following day the nomination was forwarded to the full Senate on an 1110 vote. Then, on October 6, 2018, following a supplemental FBI investigation into the allegations, the Senate voted 5048 to confirm Kavanaugh’s nomination to the Supreme Court.
Trump Calls Elevator Protesters Paid Professionals
One hour before the cloture vote, the president blasted protesters — specifically, the “elevator screamers.”
Scores of people have protested Kavanaugh’s confirmation to the court, and some were detained on Thursday.
But the president could be referencing women who held the elevator open to tell Sen. Jeff Flake, R-Arizona, how they said they had been victims of sexual assault.
“The very rude elevator screamers are paid professionals only looking to make Senators look bad. Don’t fall for it! Also, look at all of the professionally made identical signs. Paid for by Soros and others. These are not signs made in the basement from love!” Mr. Trump said.
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Brett Kavanaugh Vote Count: Here’s How Every Senator Voted On Cloture And What It Means For Confirmation
The Senate will move forward with Donald Trump’s Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh after moving to end all debate on the judge and hold a final confirmation vote Saturday.
The chamber gathered on Friday morning for a cloture vote, a process that allows Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to nix any chances for Democratic lawmakers to filibuster and delay the final tally on whether Kavanaugh should be appointed to the Supreme Court.
The Senate decided to move onto the final step of the confirmation process with a vote of 51-49.
Senator Lisa Murkowski was the only Republican who voted no on the cloture motion, while Joe Manchin was the only Democrat to vote yes in support of moving to the last confirmation vote.
Now the lawmakers were expected to cast their final vote on Kavanaugh on Saturday. Kavanaugh needs at least 51 votes to be placed on the high court as an associate justice. If confirmed, he will replace retiring Justice Anthony Kennedy on the bench.
Republicans hold a 51 to 49 majority in the chamber, but several conservative lawmakers remained on the fence on whether or not Kavanaugh should be on the Supreme Court.
Republican Jeff Flake, who stunned conservatives when he requested an FBI investigation into allegations of sexual misconduct against Kavanaugh, is now seen as a likely supporter of the judge. After the bureau’s report was released this week, Flake said that there was no corroborating evidence to support the accusations.
Kavanaugh Nomination Battle Is Fought With Millions In Secret Cash
“When considering a lifetime appointment to Supreme Court, we must evaluate the totality of the circumstances and record before us,” Heitkamp said in a statement. “In addition to the concerns about his past conduct, last Thursday’s hearing called into question Judge Kavanaugh’s current temperament, honesty, and impartiality.”
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Pence On Standby In Case His Vote Is Needed
Vie President Mike Pence is in Washington this weekend, in case his vote is needed to break a tie, sources tell CBS News.
Pence, while he has expressed his support for Kavanaugh, has been less vocal in his defense of the nominee than has Mr. Trump. At a rally in Minnesota Thursday night, the president blasted Democrats for obstructing his nominee, although it was Republicans who requested the delay in the vote to allow for the FBI probe. The president also reiterated his defense of Kavanaugh on Twitter.
“The harsh and unfair treatment of Judge Brett Kavanaugh is having an incredible upward impact on voters. The PEOPLE get it far better than the politicians. Most importantly, this great life cannot be ruined by mean & despicable Democrats and totally uncorroborated allegations!” the president tweeted Thursday.
‘we Believe Survivors’: Demonstrators Throng Capitol Hill To Protest Kavanaugh
Similar concerns moved Sen. Heidi Heitkamp, D-N.D., to announce Thursday that she would oppose Kavanaugh. Heitkamp is one of the most vulnerable Democrats on the ballot in November and has seen her poll numbers slip in recent weeks. She is running for re-election in a state that Trump won in 2016 by more than 35 points.
Heitkamp said she was troubled by Kavanaugh’s aggressive appearance before the Senate Judiciary Committee and the message his confirmation would send to women and girls across the country.
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There Are Still Undecided Red
3) Sen. Heidi Heitkamp : The North Dakota senator is one of three who voted for Gorsuch last spring. While her office told Voxs Dylan Scott early this week that she remains undecided, Heitkamp has also been vocal about the importance of Fords testimony and of listening to women who have made allegations about sexual misconduct.
It takes courage for any woman to speak up about sexual assault, and we need to respect Prof. Ford by listening to her and hearing her story,.
On the one hand, Heitkamp is among a group of red-state lawmakers who are in the fight of their political lives in this upcoming midterm election and Republicans have been hammering her on the Kavanaugh vote as a wedge issue that could influence more conservative voters. On the other hand, the sexual misconduct allegations have actually provided red-state Democrats the political cover they need to justify a vote against him.
North Dakotans expect more of their elected officials than partisan judgements, Heitkamp said in a previous statement about Kavanaughs nomination. Politics should not be part of the vetting process or the decision-making process.
Schumer: The Well Was Poisoned From The Outset
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, speaking from the Senate floor, said Kavanaugh’s nomination was against the national interests from its outset, backed by conservative special interest groups.
“The well was poisoned from the outset,” Schumer said.
Schumer went on to describe his frustrations with the process. Schumer said that when Republicans claim Democrats are behind delays, they fail to mention they held up the confirmation of Obama-era nominee Merrick Garland.
“I don’t blame them. They have a flawed nominee,” Schumer said of the Republicans.
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Flake Says That He Is A Yes On Kavanaugh
Republican Sen. Jeff Flake told reporters that unless “something big” changes, he will vote to confirm Kavanaugh.
Flake was one of the few holdouts on Kavanaugh’s confirmation, even though he announced last week that he would vote to confirm him. The senator spearheaded the movement to call for an FBI investigation into allegation of sexual misconduct last week. He now appears to be satisfied with the results of that investigation.
Murkowski A No On Advancing Kavanaugh In Procedural Vote
Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, sent shockwaves when she voted “no” on whether to advance Kavanaugh to a final vote.
But Sens. Jeff Flake, R-Arizona, Joe Manchin, D-West Virginia, and Susan Collins, R-Maine, all voted “yes” on advancing Kavanaugh to a final vote.
Those votes are not definite indicators of which way the senators will go in the final vote. Collins is set to announce her final vote at 3 p.m.
When the vote ended, GOP senators Rob Portman of Ohio and John Cornyn of Texas walked directly over to Murkowski, CBS News’ Nancy Cordes reports, and shook her hand. Portman especially is a friend of Kavanaugh’s, and has been lobbying the undecided votes on his behalf. Sen. Maria Cantwell, a Democrat from Washington, slipped Murkowski a note and walked away. Collins put her arm around Murkowski’s shoulder. And Democratic Sens. Tammy Baldwin of Wisconsin and Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota walked up to Murkowski with smiles on their faces.
Murkowski told reporters after the vote that it was a “very, very difficult” decision. While she said that she believes Kavanaugh is a “good man,” he is not the “right man for the court at this time.”
“This has truly been the most difficult decision that I’ve ever had to make,” she said.
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Flashback: Timeline Of Democrats Brutal Attacks On Brett Kavanaugh
President Trump has stated that he will move without delay to name a nominee to fill the Supreme Court following the death of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.; Speculation is rampant about whom he will nominate, but one thing we can count on is Democrats behaving shamefully.
We know this because of the way they relentlessly and groundlessly tried to destroy Justice Brett Kavanaugh during his confirmation hearings.
Here at LI, we covered that vile spectacle from beginning to end.
Fords testimony was; a disaster for the anti-Kavanaugh mob, as we noted:
She couldnt deliver. The persons she claimed were witnesses were unable to substantiate her claims, and it didnt help that her story didnt hold up even under the most casual scrutiny. Where did this assault take place? She didnt know. When did it take place? She didnt know. How did she get to the location of the assault or get home from that same location? She didnt know. Who was there? She claimed that four people were and named them, but none of them substantiated her claim.
Republicans did everything they could to hear her out, even offering at one point to come to California since she claimed she had a fear of flying . She had her day in front of the Senate committee, and it didnt go well for her.
Republicans Appearing To Lean Yes
Richard Burr of North Carolina on July 9 In nominating Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court, President Trump has put forth a highly qualified and respected candidate committed to the rule of law. Judge Kavanaughs credentials are impeccable, and as a judge for the US Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit he has considered many of the most pressing legal questions of our time.
Ted Cruz of Texas on July 9 By any measure, Judge Kavanaugh is one of the most respected federal judges in the country and I look forward to supporting his nomination to the Supreme Court of the United States.
Mike Enzi of Wyoming on July 19 It was great to talk with Judge Kavanaugh about his years of experience and dedication to the judicial system. He is an extremely well qualified nominee whose prior rulings and writings demonstrate his commitment to the Constitution and the rule of law. I appreciated his thoughtful answers to my questions and look forward to the Senates consideration of his nomination this fall.
This story will be updated with additional developments.
CNNs Maeve OBrien, Lauren Fox, Manu Raju, Ted Barrett, Phil Mattingly and Kristin Wilson contributed to this report.
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Analysis: Just The Beginning
Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation to the Supreme Court is all but certain. The Republican Party has the votes and the battle appears over. The political war, however, is just beginning.
Donald Trump’s court pick generated a controversy that captured the nation’s attention in a way that few political issues do. It generated daily headlines rivalled only by the US quadrennial presidential elections.
Now that the bombs have been thrown, it’s time to assess the fallout.
The Only Republican Opposing Brett Kavanaugh
Representative Justin Amash is the sole member of Congress who’s come out against the Supreme Court nominee, citing his record on privacy. Can he get Senator Rand Paul to join him?
As a member of the House, Representative Justin Amash does not have a vote on Judge Brett Kavanaughs nomination to the Supreme Court. But that hasnt stopped him from waging what is, so far, a lonely Republican campaign to defeat President Trumps pick to replace Justice Anthony Kennedy.
Amash, a fourth-term Michigan lawmaker who founded the congressional Liberty Caucus, immediately denounced Kavanaugh last week as a disappointing pick, and hes kept up his criticism of a nominee he views as too deferential to executive authority and hostile to the Fourth Amendments protections against unreasonable searches and seizures.
Privacy advocates must fight, Amash tweeted on Sunday. There are many potential nominees with a conservative record on abortion, guns, and regulations. The only question is will the Senate confirm one who is really bad on the #4thAmendment, when so much is at stake in upcoming digital privacy battles.
They are not expected to oppose him on Fourth Amendment grounds, however. Amashs challenge, then, will be to persuade either of his two main Senate allies in the privacy fight, Rand Paul of Kentucky or Mike Lee of Utah, to take up the cause.
Paul, who has tried to filibuster legislation reauthorizing the NSA spying programs, said on Fox, I disagree completely.
These Are The Senators To Watch During Brett Kavanaugh’s Confirmation Process
The Senate Judiciary Committee is set to vote Friday on whether to proceed with Brett Kavanaugh‘s Supreme Court nomination. But even if he is referred unfavorably out of the Committee, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell could still call a vote on the Senate floor, which could happen as soon as Tuesday.;
Kavanaugh needs 51 votes to become the Supreme Court’s next associate justice, and with a 51-49 GOP majority, a handful of senators will determine whether he takes that seat, after a day of powerful Senate testimony from Christine Blasey Ford, who accused Kavanaugh of sexually assaulting her when they were both in high school, and from Kavanaugh, who denied her allegations and lashed out at Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee over what he called a “grotesque and coordinated character assassination” that would “dissuade competent and good people from all persuasions” from serving the country.
Here’s a look at the senators to watch over the next few days as the Senate considers Kavanaugh’s confirmation:
Treat The New York Times Like Infowars
To really follow the new Eleventh Commandment, we need to treat the New York Times, The New Yorker, NBC, CNN and MSNBC as we currently treat Info Wars. Maybe Alex Jones thinks that the government is creating homosexual frogs. We could refute it, but by refuting it we legitimize it. Instead, begin the effort to ignore the lying progressive media entirely. Dont go on their shows. Dont appear in their pages. They are InfoWars.
If this seems extreme, thats because it is. Voters are sick and tired of last-minute allegations, and the future of our country is at stake. What kind of country do you want to leave for your children?
Yes, theres a difference between being bold and being stupid, and a difference between being strategic and being craven. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell understands this, and he is a patriot. But many in the Republican Party do not share voters view that we are in an epic struggle for the soul of our country, and time is of the essence. Thankfully, things can always change.
Republicans: Bring the vote to confirm Kavanaugh to the Senate floor this week. Do it for people like my grandmother, and the millions of other Americans who have been fighting for this cause, giving you money, and turning out to vote for you all their lives. They might care about taxes, but they dont vote for you because of tax cuts. Have a spine, or we will find others who do.
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