Shortly after presiding over the confirmation of Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh on Oct. 6, Vice President Mike Pence opted to exit through the front door of the Capitol building to face people who had gathered to protest the confirmation.
Pence stood at the top of the steps looking at the crowd when Assistant Sergeant-at-Arms Jim Morehand told the vice president he could exit through a different way if he preferred.
Pence briefly turned but he stopped and pivoted, according to Fox News.
“Let’s do it,” he said.
Pence and his security detail then strode down the steps. Pence waved repeatedly to the protesters.
In a statement, Pence said after the confirmation of Kavanaugh, “Today is a historic day for our country as a majority in the U.S. Senate voted to send a new voice to the Supreme Court who will uphold the timeless vision of America’s founders.”
Pence walks down Senate steps after Kavanaugh vote amid cacophony of protests. Initially stood in Senate door & was going to exit another way. Then,
defiantly reversed course, telling security detail “let’s do it.” Waves to to the demonstrators pic.twitter.com/N3avjtqHa1
— Chad Pergram (@ChadPergram) October 6, 2018
Today is a historic day for our country as a majority in the U.S. Senate voted to send a new voice to the Supreme Court who will uphold the timeless vision of America’s founders — Judge Brett Kavanaugh. My full statement below: pic.twitter.com/OYlkQEMOCR
— Vice President Mike Pence (@VP) October 6, 2018
PENCE: "On this vote, the ayes are 50; the nays are 48. The nomination of Brett M. Kavanaugh of Maryland to be an associate justice of the Supreme Court of the United States is confirmed." pic.twitter.com/azRbcmeiRo
— State of the Union (@CNNSotu) October 6, 2018
One of the roles of vice president is serving as president of the Senate, presiding over the Senate’s daily proceedings. He sat in the front of the Senate floor and helped keep order during the confirmation vote as protesters in the room sought to disrupt the proceedings by screaming.
According to the U.S. Capitol Police, a total of 101 people were arrested for unlawful demonstration throughout the Senate building, and outside of it. That included six people who unlawfully demonstrated inside the Senate Gallery, which is against the law.
The vice president is able to cast a deciding vote in the case of a tie-breaker. Kavanaugh’s confirmation ended up with a vote of 50-48. Every Republican voted for Kavanaugh except for Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), who voted “no” before quickly withdrawing her vote and saying “present” as a way of pairing her vote with Kavanaugh supporter Sen. Steve Daines (R-Mont.), who was in Montana for his daughter’s wedding and thus unable to vote “yes.”
Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) was the only Democrat to vote for Kavanaugh.
Kavanaugh was sworn in as a justice on Saturday night, by Justice Anthony Kennedy, whose retirement opened up the vacancy filled by Kavanaugh.
A public ceremony welcoming Kavanaugh to the court will take place on Oct. 8, according to President Donald Trump.