The U. S. Senate on Tuesday voted to confirm Judge Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court, with all 50 senators voting for his confirmation.
The Senate voted 98-2 to confirm Kavanaugh, who was nominated by President Donald Trump in the Senate’s confirmation process.
The 60 votes needed for confirmation were a record for the Senate, which was last confirmed to the nation’s highest court by a Republican in January.
The confirmation of Kavanaugh is a major victory for Senate Democrats, who have been fighting to confirm Trump’s Supreme Court nominees for years.
The 50-seat chamber is not expected to approve Kavanaugh’s confirmation until next year.
The nomination was the most consequential vote in Senate history, with Republicans in the chamber voting unanimously for the president’s pick to fill the seat of Justice Antonin Scalia.
The Supreme Court seat has been vacant since Justice Clarence Thomas died in February, a death that led to the resignation of Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia.
Senators were not in attendance for the vote, but Democrats said it was important to confirm the judge for the role of justice.
“We’ve waited for so long, and now we get to go back to work,” Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., said.
“We have an opportunity to move forward.”
The Senate will vote on Kavanaugh’s nomination Tuesday, and the vote on his nomination will be taken by the chamber’s minority leader, Sen. Dick Durbin, D, Ill.
After the Senate votes, the White House will send a letter to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., urging him to move quickly to confirm Gorsuch.
The president is expected to announce Gorsuch’s confirmation within the next two days, according to a senior White House official.
The White House is expected, however, to release a statement later on Tuesday to reiterate the president is committed to making the Supreme Day of Remembrance to mark the 40th anniversary of the passage of the landmark Voting Rights Act, and also the 100th anniversary in 2020 of the Supreme War on Poverty Act, a law that expanded the rights of black Americans.
Sen. Heidi Heitkamp, D., North Dakota, said Gorsuch was a “tremendous choice.”
“Judge Gorsuch has been a steadfast advocate for voting rights, equal opportunity and justice for Americans of color,” she said.