Hours ahead of a final confirmation vote for Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell repeated his confidence in the judge and said he sees the opposition to his confirmation as a “great political gift” to Republicans.
“It’s been a great political gift for us. The tactics have energized our base,” McConnell told The Washington Post Saturday, adding that he never thought Kavanaugh would withdraw after being accused of sexual assault by multiple women.
“I want to thank the mob, because they’ve done the one thing we were having trouble doing, which was energizing our base.”
The embattled path to confirmation for Kavanaugh ended Saturday afternoon when the Senate officially voted to confirm him to the Supreme Court, but the weeks leading up to that point were full of Democratic opposition and even threats of impeachment.
Republican senators have also been the target of criticism and even threats of violence from those opposing President Donald Trump’s appointee, causing some GOP leaders to need police escorts at work.
Multiple GOP senators had their personal information, including phone numbers and addresses, posted online, commonly referred to as “doxxing,” and Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas was harassed at a restaurant while out to dinner with his wife. (RELATED: Sen. Graham: The Kavanaugh Allegations Are The ‘Closest Thing To McCarthyism In My Lifetime’)
After multiple women came forward with accusations of sexual assault against Kavanaugh, many on the left called on Kavanaugh to withdraw his nomination, especially after his spirited testimony in front of the Senate Judiciary Committee.
“I never thought Judge Kavanaugh would withdraw,” McConnell told WaPo.
“When your integrity is attacked like his was, a withdrawal was certainly no solution to that, so we were in the fight to the finish.”
With the midterm elections in November, this confirmation of a conservative judge fulfills one of Trump’s campaign promises, and as McConnell said, could have a potentially significant impact on the elections for both sides.
Kavanaugh’s swearing in is scheduled for Saturday evening.
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