Washington, Oct 26 (IANS) The Republican-majority US Senate has voted to advance the nomination of Judge Amy Coney Barrett, President Donald Trump’s replacement for late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, to the Supreme Court, while paving the way for a full confirmation ballot on Monday.
Sunday’s procedural vote meant to break a Democratic filibuster in the Republican-controlled upper chamber, where the Republican senators needed only a simple majority to advance the nomination, and the result was 51-48, reports Xinhua news agency.
If confirmed, which is all but assured given the Republican resolve to do so, Judge Barrett, a conservative, will be a Supreme Court Justice who has gone through one of the quickest confirmation proceedings in modern US history.
Democrats opposed Barrett’s confirmation, citing the proximity to the Nov. 3 presidential election.
Having grilled Barrett over issues from Obamacare and abortion rights during the 48-year-old appellate court judge’s confirmation hearings earlier this month, Senate Democrats, however, conceded that they didn’t have the tools to prevent the Republicans from speeding up the process.
Senator Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, who was one of just two GOP senators who opposed a full Senate vote on the Barrett nomination, has now announced she will vote a ‘yes’ if the Senate does take up a ballot.
Susan Collins, Republican senator from Maine who also expressed concerns that the nomination was too close to the election, is still expected to not confirm Barrett.
Barrett was nominated by President Trump on September 26.
If confirmed, she is expected to lock in a 6-3 conservative majority on the Supreme Court for decades.