Hundreds protest outside of Supreme Court ahead of Kavanaugh vote

Hundreds protest outside of Supreme Court ahead of Kavanaugh vote

More than 300 people were arrested, including the comedian Amy Schumer, who is a second cousin of Senate Democrat leader Chuck Schumer, and model Emily Ratajkowski.

The Senate is expected to take a key procedural vote at 10:30 a.m. on Friday to end the debate on Kavanaugh's nomination.

Trump nominated Kavanaugh to replace Justice Anthony Kennedy, who had been a swing vote on a panel now equally divided between four conservative and four liberal justices. That means if just two Republicans voted against Mr Kavanaugh's confirmation it would be defeated, provided the party's political opponents all voted against.

Three Republicans who could be key to whether Mr Kavanaugh is confirmed - Senators Jeff Flake, Susan Collins and Lisa Murkowski - have criticised Mr Trump for mocking Dr Ford at a political rally in MS on on Tuesday.

Despite Trump's assertion on Monday that "the FBI should interview anybody that they want, within reason", confusion beset the investigation, fed by conflicting signals over what constraints had been placed on the bureau.

Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowski, said she was "still reviewing" her decision. Flake said he saw no additional corroborating information against Kavanaugh, although he was "still reading" it.

All eyes are on the key Republicans who could make or break the nomination - Jeff Flake of Arizona, Susan Collins of ME and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska.

A spokesman for Hassan declined to comment Wednesday night. Said Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., "The senators who requested the supplemental background check got what they requested, and I am ready to vote".

A senior Senate Republican aide said there was growing confidence that Republican Senators Susan Collins and Flake and Democratic Senator Joe Manchin - all swing votes - would support Kavanaugh.

The FBI did not pursue any investigation into still other uncorroborated allegations lodged by others - including one by Julie Swetnick, who has given conflicting accounts but seems to suggest the judge was in the vicinity of high school parties where she says gang rapes happened.

In an October 3 piece for Politico, journalist Matthew Miller stressed that Democrats needed to be aggressive and proactive in demanding a more comprehensive investigation of Kavanaugh. The price of locking in a conservative Supreme Court majority for decades may be loosing control of Congress this November. After critics blasted Kavanaugh's September 27 testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee as overtly emotional and more, even Republican Justice John Paul Stevens admitted "there's merit to that criticism", the Palm Beach Post originally reported. Kavanaugh wrote that his testimony "reflected my overwhelming frustration at being wrongly accused".

The letter says that in his hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee last week, Kavanaugh "displayed a lack of judicial temperament that would be disqualifying for any court, and certainly for election to the highest court of the land".

Kavanaugh's demeanor and conduct during the hearing alarmed the law professors. "I look forward to voting for his confirmation imminently", he said.

Kavanaugh's nomination has become a flashpoint in the #MeToo movement against sexual harassment and assault. Stevens said that while he previously supported Kavanaugh's nomination, he sees the judge differently now "for reasons that have no relationship to his intellectual ability".

The FBI report was not released to the public. Only senators and authorized staff will be able to read them.

If all the Democrats oppose Kavanaugh, Trump can not afford to lose the support of more than one Republican for his nominee, with Vice President Mike Pence casting a tiebreaking vote.

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