Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia told reporters that he is as yet “undecided” about whether he will vote for Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh.
Manchin, who is running for re-election in a traditionally Republican state, told Al Jazeera that he will wait to review the supplemental FBI report of findings before he makes his decision on Kavanaugh.
However, the Democratic senator said that he considers the Kavanaugh confirmation process to have been “horrible.”
“This has been horrible. It’s another circus,” Manchin said.
“I am looking at the gentleman as an adult from 22 to 53 — 31 years of professional service. I am looking at him as a father. As a person in a community, how he interacts with his community. I am trying to put the human side to it,” he added.
The FBI report that Manchin is waiting to read was called for by Republican Sen. Jeff Flake of Arizona following an accusation of attempted assault made against Kavanaugh by Christine Blasey Ford, who says the current Supreme Court nominee groped and restrained her during a party the two attended in 1982.
Manchin, along with Democratic Sen. Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota, are both considered to be possible swing votes in favor of Kavanaugh, who was nominated by President Donald Trump in July.
Both Heitkamp and Manchin voted to confirm Neil Gorsuch, Trump’s first appointment to the Supreme Court, last year.
Early Thursday, Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley announced via Twitter that the FBI had delivered a copy of its report to the committee.
“Supplemental FBI background file for Judge Kavanaugh has been received by @senjudiciary Ranking Member Feinstein & I have agreed to alternating EQUAL access for senators to study content from additional background info gathered by non-partisan FBI agents,” Grassley tweeted.
Supplemental FBI background file for Judge Kavanaugh has been received by @senjudiciary Ranking Member Feinstein & I have agreed to alternating EQUAL access for senators to study content from additional background info gathered by non-partisan FBI agents 1/3
— ChuckGrassley (@ChuckGrassley) October 4, 2018
Some Democrats are still unsatisfied with the report, even before having seen it.
Sen. Dick Durbin of Illinois said Wednesday that he considers the way in which committee members will have to view the report to be “bizarre.”
“Get this — one copy! For the United States Senate,” Durbin said, according to The Hill. “That’s what we were told. And we were also told that we would be given one hour for the Dems, one hour for the Republicans. Alternating.”
“Bizarre, it doesn’t make any sense,” Durbin added.
Following the release of the report, White House Deputy Press Secretary Raj Shah addressed Democrats’ concerns in a statement.
Shah said that senators will be given “ample time” read Kavanaugh’s “seventh background investigation,” despite protests from Democrats over a plan to allow members to trade off just one copy of the report between parties every hour.
“This is the last addition to the most comprehensive review of a Supreme Court nominee in history, which includes extensive hearings, multiple committee interviews, over 1,200 questions for the record and over a half million pages of documents,” Shah said according to The Hill.
Shah said the White House “is fully confident” the Senate will vote to confirm Kavanaugh’s nomination.
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