Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) revealed Friday he does in fact plan to confirm nominee Ketanji Brown Jackson to replace retiring Justice Stephen Breyer on the Supreme Court.
"After meeting with her, considering her record, and closely monitoring her testimony and questioning before the Senate Judiciary Committee this week, I have determined I intend to vote for her nomination to serve on the Supreme Court," Manchin said of Jackson in a statement.
"During our meeting, she was warm and gracious," he continued. "Notably, Judge Jackson and her family spend a great deal of time in West Virginia and her deep love of our state and commitment to public service were abundantly clear. I am confident Judge Jackson is supremely qualified and has the disposition necessary to serve as our nation's next Supreme Court Justice."
Though Democrats can push Jackson through without any Republican support, just one defection would sink that method, unless a member of the GOP hops on board. Given Manchin's history of breaking with his caucus and President Biden on key issues, some worried he might complicate things, writes CNBC.
The senator's backing now essentially ensures the nominee's confirmation, posits The Washington Post. Upper-chamber Democrats are hoping to move to a full confirmation vote by early next month, CNN writes.
On Thursday, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) unveiled that he "cannot and will not" support Jackson's confirmation, though he wasn't expected to be a vote in favor anyway.