Sen. Heidi Heitkamp (D-N.D.) has announced that she will vote "no" on the confirmation vote for Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh.
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Heitkamp, along with Sens. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.), Susan Collins (R-Maine) and Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) were considered possible swing votes on Kavanaugh's nomination. Manchin, Collins, and Murkowski have yet to indicate how they will be voting.
Heitkamp told WDAY-TV, "The process has been bad, but at the end of the day you have to make a decision. And I've made that decision."
Asked what that decision was, Heitkamp clarified, "I will be voting 'no' on Judge Kavanaugh."
In an official statement released after the interview aired, Heitkamp said, in part:
I voted for Justice Gorsuch because I felt his legal ability and temperament qualified him to serve on the Supreme Court. Judge Kavanaugh is different. When considering a lifetime appointment to Supreme Court, we must evaluate the totality of the circumstances and record before us. In addition to the concerns about his past conduct, last Thursday’s hearing called into question Judge Kavanaugh’s current temperament, honesty, and impartiality. These are critical traits for any nominee to serve on the highest court in our country.
She concluded by saying:
There are many extremely qualified candidates to serve on the Court. I’m ready to work with the President to confirm a nominee who is suited for the honor and distinction of serving this lifetime appointment.
My statement on U.S. Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh: https://t.co/exZcK78JtF— Archive: Sen. Heidi Heitkamp (@Archive: Sen. Heidi Heitkamp) 1538677762.0
Republicans feel confident that they have 49 votes, so only one of the remaining three undecided senators would have to vote for Kavanaugh in order for Vice President Mike Pence to be able to use his tiebreaker vote as president of the Senate to confirm Kavanaugh.
Heitkamp has been in a close race with Republican challenger and current member of Congress Rep. Kevin Cramer. A new poll showed Cramer with a 10-point lead over Heitkamp. 60 percent of respondents to the same poll said that they supported Kavanaugh's nomination, while only 27 percent were against it.
This a developing story and will be updated as events warrant.