“Some of the people have come up to me at parades and said, ‘Shut them down, do this and do that,’” said Sen. Dick Durbin, the Senate’s minority whip. “It reflects a limited understanding of how the Senate operates.”

In hindsight, the early calls from Democratic senators to delay a vote on Kavanaugh were “inartful” and “unfortunate,” said Brian Fallon, a former Clinton campaign and Obama Justice Department spokesperson and the president of the liberal judicial advocacy group Demand Justice.

“That was misunderstood. I think the senators throwing it out there, what they really just meant to do was call to mind the hypocrisy of [Sen. Mitch] McConnell,” Fallon said. “People thought they meant they were going to ‘pull out all the stops’ and try to block it — but they actually have no means to do that.”