Murkowski votes against advancing Kavanaugh

Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, voted today, Oct. 5, against moving ahead with confirmation of Judge Brett Kavanaugh to the U.S. Supreme Court.

The vote was strictly procedural on whether to advance the nomination further on the Senate floor. The senator has not said how she plans to vote on Saturday, Oct. 6.

Murkowski said she had been wrestling with her decision on the Oct. 5 vote and did not reach it until today.

Meanwhile Senators Jeff Flake, R-Arizona, Susan Collins, R-Maine, and Joe Manchin, D-West Virginia, vote to move the nomination forward. There is no indication of how any of these four senators will vote on Oct. 6.

In comments explaining her vote today, Murkowski said that she believes the issues the nation is facing now are bigger than the nominee and that she feels Kavanaugh is a good man.

“It just may be that in my view he’s not the right man for the court at this time,” she said. “So, I have taken my vote here this morning, I’m going to go back to my office and write a floor statement that is more fulsome and have the opportunity to have that.”

Murkowski said today’s decision has “been the most difficult evaluation of a decision that I have ever had to make, and I’ve made some interesting ones in my career.”

Her vote today earned her kudos from the Alaska Federation of Natives, which opposes Kavanaugh’s nomination, based on his record on the constitutional rights of Natives peoples.