Kavanaugh's confirmation hinges on the votes of some other key moderate senators including Sen.
By a vote of 50-48, the Senate gave a lifetime job to Kavanaugh, 53, after weeks of fierce debate over sexual violence, privilege and alcohol abuse that convulsed the nation just weeks before congressional elections on November 6.
Kavanaugh replaces Justice Anthony Kennedy, who retired earlier this year.
What's more, a former Supreme Court justice has taken the unusual step of getting actively involved in a Supreme Court nominee's confirmation process. Kavanaugh forcefully denied the accusations in sworn testimony.
Democrats railed against the nomination in Senate floor speeches Friday night and Saturday morning, and protests opposing Kavanaugh are expected throughout the day on Saturday.
The group of about 150 who somehow got around the newly-erected barricade were among about 2,000 protesters - a lot of them women - outside the building where senators were to vote mid-afternoon.
Vice President Mike Pence planned to be available Saturday in case his tie-breaking vote was needed.
"I do not believe that these charges can fairly prevent Judge Kavanaugh from serving on the court", Collins said. That rare procedural maneuver left Kavanaugh with the same two-vote margin he'd have had if Murkowski and Daines had both voted.
Manchin used an emailed statement to announce his support for Kavanaugh moments after Collins finished talking.
In a lengthy speech on the Senate floor, Collins argued that while the eleventh-hour sexual assault allegations against Kavanaugh were plausible, they did not meet the necessary standards of evidence to overcome Kavanaugh's right to the presumption of innocence.
"If you appear before congress and lie, you're out, and I really wish the senators felt that way", she said. "I'm in awe of their courage, too", she said in a statement.
Brett Kavanaugh looked headed for a lifetime job on the U.S. Supreme Court today after two crucial senators said they would vote to confirm his appointment despite accusations of sexual misconduct.
"We know the Senate is better than this".
Kavanaugh's confirmation comes a little less than three weeks after Christine Blasey Ford publicly accused Kavanaugh of sexually assaulting her in the 1980s.
The upper house is split 51-49 in favour of the Republicans and the vote was largely along party lines. FEMA said there are a few reasons people may not have received the message, including if they were taking a call or using their phone at the time.
Democrats paraded to a almost empty Senate chamber overnight to lambast the nominee.
Grassley then apparently discovered feminism in the time between his original comment and the inevitable walk back.
Two Republican waverers, Susan Collins and Jeff Flake, finally made a decision to back the judge. Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, who told reporters that while she believes Kavanaugh is "a good man", she also felt the confirmation process had become about something "bigger than a nominee".