Republican Senator Susan Collins and Democrat Joe Manchin said they’ll support Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination to the U.S. Supreme Court, ensuring he’ll be confirmed Saturday after a bitter fight over sexual assault allegations against the nominee.
“I do not believe that these charges can fairly prevent Judge Kavanaugh from serving on the court,” Collins of Maine said Friday in a Senate floor speech. She broke with fellow moderate Republican Senator Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, who opposes the nominee.
Immediately after Collins’ speech, Manchin of West Virginia issued a statement declaring his support.
Kavanaugh now has enough support to be confirmed in a vote planned for Saturday afternoon.
Manchin is in a tight race for re-election in his home state, where President Donald Trump beat Democrat Hillary Clinton by 42 percentage points in 2016.
Manchin said he had reservations about Kavanaugh because of the sexual misconduct allegations against him “and the temperament he displayed in the hearing.”
But he said he believes Kavanaugh will “determine cases based on the legal findings before him.” Manchin added, “I do hope that Judge Kavanaugh will not allow the partisan nature this process took to follow him onto the court.”