The Supreme Court nomination of Judge Brett Kavanaugh advanced Friday in a narrow 51-49 vote, but there are no guarantees the final vote, expected as early as Saturday, will have the same outcome.
The final result is largely in the hands of a single person, Republican Sen. Susan Collins of Maine.
Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) voted against moving forward with the nomination and later said she would oppose Kavanaugh in the final vote. She was the first Republican to break with the party and join most Democrats in opposing Kavanaugh.
Sen. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) told reporters Friday he would vote to confirm Brett Kavanaugh, President Trump’s Supreme Court nominee, “unless something big changes.”
Flake’s decision leaves two senators — Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) and Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.V.) — who have not announced how they will vote this weekend. On Friday morning, Flake, Collins and Manchin voted yes on advancing the controversial nomination.
Collins is expected to disclose her final decision in a floor speech at 3 p.m. EDT Friday; Manchin has not indicated when or if he plans to announce his vote in advance.
In a speech highly critical of China’s behavior around the world, Vice President Mike Pence laid out an increasingly confrontational approach to Beijing, signaling tougher actions to come to combat what President Trump sees as a threat to the American economy and his political authority.
Capitol Police have begun arresting about 300 demonstrators protesting Brett Kavanaugh’s Supreme Court nomination as they stage a sit-in on the floor of a Senate office building's atrium.
At a signal from organizers, the group began holding up signs and chanting. Others who were watching on upper floors unfurled banners that said: “We believe Christine Ford.”
Ford is the California college professor who testified last week at a Senate hearing that Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her in high school when they were teenagers. Kavanaugh also testified and denied the allegations.
Former Vice President Joe Biden plans to campaign Thursday in Orange County for five of the California Democrats who are battling to capture U.S. House seats now held by Republicans.
Biden, one of the top potential candidates for the Democratic presidential nomination in 2020, was also holding a private fundraiser Thursday in Los Angeles for American Possibilities, his political action committee.
His afternoon rally at Cal State Fullerton follows a similar event last month in Anaheim, where former President Obama campaigned for six California Democrats in fiercely contested House races.