Sen. Jeff Flake (R-AZ) revealed in a statement Friday that he will vote to confirm Judge Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court.
Flake, a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, was considered a key swing vote to confirm Kavanaugh for the Supreme Court.
The senator’s full statement reads:
After hearing more than 30 hours of testimony from Judge Kavanaugh earlier this month, I was prepared to support his nomination based on his view of the law and his record as a judge. In fact, I commented at the time that had he been nominated in another era, he would have likely received 90+ votes.
When Dr. Ford’s allegations against Judge Kavanaugh surfaced two weeks ago, I insisted that she be allowed to testify before the committee moved to a vote. Yesterday, we heard compelling testimony from Dr. Ford, as well as a persuasive response from Judge Kavanaugh. I wish that I could express the confidence that some of my colleagues have conveyed about what either did or did not happen in the early 1980s, but I left the hearing yesterday with as much doubt as certainty.
What I do know is that our system of justice affords a presumption of innocence to the accused, absent corroborating evidence. That is what binds us to the rule of law. While some may argue that a different standard should apply regarding the Senate’s advice and consent responsibilities, I believe that the constitution’s provisions of fairness and due process apply here as well.
I will vote to confirm Judge Kavanaugh.
CNN reports that when Sen. Chris Coons (D-DE) heard the news of Flake’s decision, his immediate response was, “Oh f*ck.”
Coons said, “Oh f—k,” then choked up, “We each make choices for our own reason. I’m struggling, sorry.”
— Elizabeth Landers (@ElizLanders) September 28, 2018
Left-wing protesters at the Capitol immediately confronted Flake after his announcement.
WATCH — Sexual assault survivors confront Jeff Flake on the elevator moments after he says he will vote to confirm Judge Kavanaugh pic.twitter.com/2d3ABs0s2H
— J.D. Durkin (@jiveDurkey) September 28, 2018
Flake is not running for re-election in the 2018 midterm elections.