The number of arrests outside the Senate continued to climb throughout the day. While liberal protesters were decrying the police state, authorities made it clear that the assembly was an illegal gathering with no permit issued. CNN was treating the protesters like a collection of Rosa Parks, lauding their “courage” for standing up to whatever it is they were trying to convey. Oddly, most of the signs and shirts I saw on display at the gathering had to do with voting. It’s almost as if this was never really about justice for actual victims of sexual assault or the qualifications of the nominee. It began looking more and more like it was all a stunt to drive the Get Out The Vote effort next month. Wonders never cease.

Townhall was liveblogging the action all afternoon if you want to scroll through some of the entries. A lot of “interesting” pictures of the protesters.

But in the end, what this was really about was Cocaine Mitch herding all the ponies back into the corral and getting enough votes to get this done. The agreement to have Lisa Murkowski vote present instead of no was about the best compromise that could be reached. I’ll confess that there was one haunting fear in the back of my mind. The Whips supposedly had all of the votes counted in advance and everyone knew it was going to be close, but Kavanaugh would make it over the finish line. But, I wondered… what if one of them was lying? What if Flake was pulling a fast one or Collins was going to take her seat and announce she’d had a last minute change of mind? Could they hustle Steve Daines onto a jet from his daughter’s wedding back to DC?

In the end, the vote happened. And it came down to the predicted vote. The hysterics outside, in the gallery and the hallways… none of it changed a thing.

So what now? The Sturm und Drang has been deafening over the summer. But will it all simply be forgotten now? Removing Kavanaugh via impeachment would require more Democratic votes than anyone realistically anticipates in the foreseeable future. You can keep complaining all you like, but the deal is done.

Congratulations to Associate Justice Brett Kavanaugh. And a tip of the hat to Cocaine Mitch for getting the job done. We’ll add some of the protest videos later, but for now, let’s just be thankful that the GOP pulled this together.