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Sen. Susan Collins, Maine Republican, who shifted the tide in favor of confirmation, slammed critics who claimed Judge Kavanaugh must be rejected so that the Senate is not condoning sexual assault. Numerous protesters said they felt powerless but vowed that next month's midterms would change that.

Democrats are seen as having a solid chance to captured the House, fueled in part by women voters who are upset over Kavanaugh and dislike Trump.

Chief Justice John Roberts administered the constitutional oath and retired Justice Anthony Kennedy administered the judicial one.

But unlike Democrats in the upper chamber, who are likely to remain in the minority after November's elections, Nadler could soon have subpoena power and a chairman's gavel, backed by a Democratic majority in the House. Republicans are convinced it will motivate their sleepy base.

White House aides had initially taken a more cautious approach, advising the president to tread carefully around a controversy that may still sour suburban women and independent voters.

Kavanaugh's nomination became an intense personal and political drama when university professor Christine Blasey Ford accused him of sexually assaulting her when they were high school students in a wealthy suburb of Washington in 1982.

Donald Trump however appeared to rub salt into the wound of many by tweeting his congratulations. Later today, I will sign his Commission of Appointment, and he will be officially sworn in.

The accusations against Kavanaugh energized the #MeToo social media movement that emerged after high-profile accusations of sexual assault and harassment by men in politics, the media and the entertainment industry. "If he were present and voting, he would have voted aye", Murkowski said during the roll call vote.

Republicans "conducted one of the least transparent, least fair, most biased processes in Senate history, slanting the table from the very beginning to produce their desired result", he added.

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Both Republicans and Democrats expect the Senate's Kavanaugh decision will be a central theme in the midterm elections. He went on to urge the crowd to go to the polls next month, telling them they "have a chance to stop the radical Democrats" by electing Republicans to Congress. "The other side is obviously fired up, they have been all year".

Repeatedly during the Senate debate, Republicans accused Democrats of staging a smear campaign against Kavanaugh to prevent a conservative becoming a Supreme Court justice.

That response will likely be scrutinized even further with the November 6 midterm elections a month away, giving Democrats have a chance take control of one or more chambers of Congress.

Kavanaugh's confirmation is even more of a triumph for the administration considering the obstacles he overcame to be confirmed.

Trump and the Republicans said the probe supported their contention that Ford's allegations were "uncorroborated", but Democrats - and Ford - said the investigation was inadequate.

The lone Republican to oppose the nomination was Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia, a state Trump won big in the 2016 presidential election.

In divergent and often bitter remarks before the Friday morning vote, senior senators delivered closing arguments that demonstrated how deeply the nomination has split the Senate.

The only Republican to vote against Kavanaugh, Senator Lisa Murkowski, said in a speech on the Senate floor on Friday night that her decision was "agonizing" but after watching Kavanaugh's Senate testimony she "could not conclude that he is the right person for the court at this time".