GOP Sen. Steve Daines will be out Saturday; impact on Kavanaugh vote unclear

Posted at 8:59 PM, Oct 04, 2018
and last updated 2018-10-04 23:47:40-04

Republican Sen. Steve Daines of Montana will be out Saturday because he will be walking his daughter down the aisle at her wedding, and would miss a confirmation vote for Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh held that day, his spokesperson told CNN on Thursday.

The Senate is currently on track to take a key procedural vote to advance the nomination on Friday morning, with a final confirmation vote possible on Saturday.

It’s unclear how the absence could affect a Saturday vote or whether it will delay the vote — in part because it’s not yet clear how many Republican senators will vote to support the nomination. Daines himself backs Kavanaugh.

Senate Republicans need at least 50 votes if Vice President Mike Pence steps in to break a tie for both Friday’s procedural vote and a final confirmation vote. That means they can’t lose more than one GOP senator if all Democrats vote in opposition.

Republican Sens. Jeff Flake of Arizona, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska and Susan Collins of Maine have not yet indicated how they plan to vote and neither has red state Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia.