Lindsey Graham suggests Kavanaugh could be renominated next year

October 2, 2018

Sen. Lindsey Graham said Tuesday that President Trump should be prepared to renominate Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court next year, saying a new crop of senators elected in November may view him more kindly.

Mr. Graham, who has emerged as Judge Kavanaugh’s most forceful backer in the Senate, urged his colleagues “not to quit” on the nominee in the face of “smears and attempts at character assassination.” But he said if Judge Kavanaugh’s opponents prevail in defeating his nomination this week, Mr. Trump should renominate him.

“I believe Judge Kavanaugh will be confirmed to the Supreme Court very soon. However, if his nomination were to fall short, I would encourage President Trump to renominate Judge Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court. It would in effect be appealing the Senate’s verdict directly to the American people,” Mr. Graham said.

He said voters would have a chance to register their disapproval of the anti-Kavanaugh campaign in November’s elections, and said “a new group of senators may view Judge Kavanaugh’s nomination very differently.”

Mr. Trump, asked about the idea Tuesday afternoon, said he’s still focused on getting Judge Kavanaugh approved right now.

But the president, who has been active in campaigning for Republican candidates, said he sees an intensity of support for Judge Kavanaugh.

“It’s like a rallying cry for the Republicans. They are so in favor of Judge Kavanaugh,” he said.

Update hourly