Along with Sen Murkowski, Collins is a supporter of abortion rights, and was thought at one time to be considering voting against Kavanaugh in the face of widespread pressure from abortion advocates who believe that his elevation to the Supreme Court might trigger a revisiting of the decision Roe v. Wade.
When confirmation hearings on Kavanaugh's nomination began before the Senate Judiciary Committee at the beginning of September, pro-abortion advocates mounted a public campaign to sway senate votes.
Rachel O'Leary Carmona, chief operating officer of the Women's March, said at the time that the reason pro-abortion protestors had disrupted Kavanaugh's confirmation hearings was because their "lives are at risk" and that "women will die if Kavanaugh is confirmed."
O'Leary Carmona also said that politicians who refused to stop Kavanaugh would be made to "pay" during the November midterm elections and in 2020, saying, "if you're a Democrat, we'll primary you - if you're a Republican, your seat will be flipped."
Sen. Collins did, however, publicly praise Kavanaugh's judicial record and said she did not think his nomination posed a threat to the landmark abortion decision.
Sen. Manchin is facing a closely fought reelection campaign in West Virginia, a state President Donald Trump carried in 2016 with 68 percent of the vote. His status as a pro-life politician has come under increasing scrutiny following public statements in support of Planned Parenthood and an August vote in the Senate to reject a measure that would have blocked federal government funding to the abortion provider.
If the final vote in the Senate had ended in a 50-50 stalemate, Vice President Mike Pence would have cast the deciding vote.
Despite the controversy which has subsequently surrounded his nomination, following allegations of sexual misconduct in high school, Brett Kavanaugh was originally hailed as an uncontroversial selection by President Trump.
At the time of his nomination, friends of the judge described him to CNA as a sincere Catholic committed to living out his faith.
Brett Kavanaugh was nominated on July 9 to succeed Justice Anthony Kennedy, for whom he once worked as a clerk. Kennedy is also a practicing Catholic.
In July, friends of the nominee described him as a sincere and humble man. Shannen Coffin, an attorney in Washington, D.C., who has known him for 20 years, told CNA at the time that Kavanaugh was "a devoted father, and spouse," and someone with a strong ethic of service.
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"He's also the guy who after a day of long meetings with senators, you know, and without fanfare, was serving food to the homeless."
Another long-time friend of Kavanaugh, Msgr. John Enzler, CEO and president of Catholic Charities for the Archdiocese of Washington, D.C., told CNA that the judge was "a guy who's very friendly, very outgoing, very nice, lot of laughter, big smile, wonderful father, wonderful husband, man of faith, lives his faith, goes to church every week."
As he takes his seat on the Supreme Court, Brett Kavanaugh brings the number of Catholics sitting on the bench back up to six out of the nine justices. Chief Justice John G. Roberts is a practicing Catholic, as are Justices Clarence Thomas, Samuel Alito, and Sonia Sotomayor.
Justice Neil Gorsuch was baptized Catholic and received the sacrament of Confirmation, though he has reportedly attended an Episcopalian church for a number of years.