Those allegations magnified the clash from a routine Supreme Court struggle over judicial ideology into an angrier, more complex jumble of questions about victims' rights, the presumption of innocence and personal attacks on nominees.
With Vice President Mike Pence presiding, and frequent outbursts by Kavanaugh opponents in the gallery, the vote was a close 50 to 48.
Sophia Piper, a 16-year-old from Kavanaugh's hometown of Bethesda, Md., told Van Sant she chose to demonstrate against Kavanaugh's confirmation Saturday "in support of all survivors who have told their stories and been met with disbelief from their parents, law enforcement, any other adult in power in their lives".
The Republican leader said he was talking with political strategists a day before Saturday's vote to confirm Kavanaugh and they told him voters were more excited by the court fight than by any other issues.
"This has all really helped me, No. 1, unify my conference, and No. 2, underscore the significance of the Senate", the Kentucky Republican said.
The leader of an anti-abortion group that supported Kavanaugh foreshadowed the fight to come in a statement issued just after the confirmation vote.
Kellyanne Conway, a senior White House adviser, said on ABC's "This Week" that the focus should turn from Kavanaugh's combative testimony and towards his 12 years as a respected appeals court judge in Washington.
"Something happened to Dr. Ford". He flashed two thumbs up when the final vote was declared and aides on board applauded. But we will carry that anger into the election.
Kay Coles James, president of the conservative Heritage Foundation, called the vote "a victory for liberty in America" and called Kavanaugh "a good man and good jurist". Protests against Kavanaugh - who will now serve a lifetime appointment after overcoming credible allegations of sexual assault, which he denied - continued outside the Capitol and Supreme Court during the ceremony.
Since then, the country watched agape as one electric moment after another gushed forth.
While his accuser, Ford, a research psychologist at a California university, had written to her Congressional Representative with her allegations against Kavanaugh in July, it was publicised by the Democrats only in September after the Senate Judiciary Committee had grilled him and was about to vote on recommending his nomination to the entire Senate.
Demonstrators chanted "Kavanaugh has got to go, no means no!" while occupying the bridge.
Trump said "radical Democrats" have become "an angry, left-wing mob" and "too risky and extreme to govern".
Sen. Chris Coons (D-DE) speaks with reporters on the way to the Senate floor on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., October 3, 2018.
Walking a fine line, some conceded that they believed Ford was telling the truth that she was attacked at the party, but did not think the attacker was Kavanaugh.
"Their strategy to capitalize on the "Me Too" movement for the political purposes backfired on them", Republican strategist Alice Stewart said of Democrats. "These are highly principled people", Verrilli says, "and Roe is incompatible with their most deeply held views about how you ought to understand and interpret the Constitution".
As exhausted senators prepared for Saturday's vote, some were flanked by security guards.
Democratic senators, who worked to block Kavanaugh, insisted the caustic battle would motivate their party faithful at the polls next month. I don't know by whom.
The confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court drew sharp reactions from Hollywood celebrities. He has used his lame-duck status as leverage to resist efforts to push through items on President Donald Trump's agenda.
USA president Donald Trump had nominated Kavanaugh on July 9, 2018, as a replacement of Associate Justice Anthony Kennedy.
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