Senator Collins backs Kavanaugh, paving way for confirmation

  • Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, is followed by members of the media as she walks to the Capitol before a vote to advance Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination to the Supreme Court, on Capitol Hill, Friday, Oct. 5, 2018 in Washington. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

  • Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W. Va., right, and Sen. Tim Kaine, D-Va., left, walk together after viewing the FBI supplemental background report on Supreme Court Justice nominee Brett Kavanaugh in the SCIF in the Capitol in Washington, Friday, Oct. 5, 2018, before the procedural vote on the Senate floor later in the morning. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

WASHINGTON — Republican Sen. Susan Collins of Maine said Friday she will vote to confirm Brett Kavanaugh’s Supreme Court nomination, all but ensuring that a deeply riven Senate will elevate the conservative jurist to the nation’s highest court despite allegations that he sexually assaulted women decades ago.