McConnell now open to high court nomination in election year


President Donald Trump prepared a triumphant swearing-in ceremony for his new conservative Supreme Court justice Monday and called sexual assault allegations against Brett Kavanaugh a "hoax".

As he boarded a plane to Florida, Mr Trump told reporters: "I've been hearing that. now they're thinking about impeaching a brilliant jurist, a man that did nothing wrong, a man that was caught up in a hoax that was set up by the Democrats using the Democrats lawyers and now they want to impeach him". (An allegation, it should be said, that was disproven by reporters on the ground.) The following day, after the judge's confirmation, he spoke for American women, saying they were "outraged at what happened to Brett Kavanaugh".

While some Democrats, including Congressman Jerry Nadler (D-NY), toy with the idea of investigating and even impeaching Kavanaugh should the Democrats take the House, others say the party should be focused on the election and healing the divide.

If there had been higher Democratic turnout in the 2010 and 2014 midterms, Kavanaugh could not have made it to the Supreme Court.

He did not cite "tradition going back to the 1880s" but noted that Joe Biden, when he was the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee in 1992, said action on a Supreme Court nominee should be postponed until after an election "once the political season is underway".

He was officially sworn in hours after the Senate narrowly confirmed him Saturday to a lifetime seat on the country's highest court.

Trump continued lashing out at Democrats when he rallied supporters in Topeka, telling them the opposition party conducted a "shameless campaign of political and personal destruction" against Kavanaugh.

Kavanaugh, whose nomination was hit by multiple accusations of sexual misconduct against him from his past, replaces Kennedy who had announced his resignation early this year.

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Kavanaugh, now the country's 114th Supreme Court justice, could give conservatives a solid 5-4 ideological edge on the court and shape rulings for decades. If this sounds quite familiar by now, the Senate race is showing a sharp contrast - Trump's party has a 7 in 9 chance of taking the Senate and this late surge has gained on the Kavanaugh controversy. I mean, who would have thought a thing like that could have happened, what he's been through?

He added that he wasn't personally involved in speaking to Trump or Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell on the issue of Kavanaugh's confirmation.

On Saturday, the Senate voted 50-48 in Kavanaugh's favor, with Sen. "The best student, the best scholar, the great intellect, incredible record over many years". Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), who said she would be a no vote, voting present to make up for her Republican colleague Sen.

He called the Kavanaugh row "a disgraceful situation brought about by people who are evil", and said that the result was "very exciting". "We all toughed it out together".

But Monday marked the first time Trump has assigned a motive to Democrats or suggested the claims of any of Kavanaugh's accusers were intentional fiction.

And I will always be a team player on the team of nine.

"I think there's no question that the tactics have energized our base like we were unable to do before this", the Kentucky Republican said.

Midterm elections usually go badly for a sitting U.S. president's party but here too, Trump is a wildcard and the first signs are polls showing Republican strength in the Senate forecasts.