President Donald Trump’s Supreme Court nominee, Brett Kavanaugh testifies before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, Sept. 6, 2018, for the third day of his confirmation to replace retired Justice Anthony Kennedy. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
In a narrow vote with one Democrat joining the Republicans, Brett Kavanaugh has become the newest Associate Justice of the Supreme Court. He replaces Anthony Kennedy, a long-time swing vote, as what is expected to be a consistent conservative vote.
Montana Senator Steve Daines was not present for the vote, and Lisa Murkowski pulled her vote, leaving a final count of 50-48. Joe Manchin of West Virginia sided with the Republicans.
Screams filled the gallery and the Senate Sergeant-at-Arms was asked repeatedly to remove protestors from the room. Several reporters on social media have also reported that protestors are likewise screaming in the halls outside the Senate chamber.
The screams from the protestors in the Senate are primal.
— Sam Stein (@samstein) October 6, 2018
I'm just off the Senate floor. We can hear protesters from outside as well
— Jamie Dupree (@jamiedupree) October 6, 2018
Kavanaugh’s confirmation is the closest vote for a Supreme Court Justice since 1881, Dupree also reported. It comes amid weeks of controversial allegations and emotional testimony in both letters to the Senate Judiciary Committee and in a publicly-broadcast hearing. The final vote ends the Senate’s role in the controversy for the moment, but the actions of both Democrats and Republicans are likely to stir up the base on both sides for weeks to come.
And, those weeks are vital to both parties with the midterm elections a month away.