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Johnson praises Kavanaugh pick, Baldwin cautious ahead of confirmation battle

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Brett Kavanaugh

MILWAUKEE -- Two people from Wisconsin get to vote on President Donald Trump's Supreme Court nominee, and those two people are talking different games about Judge Brett Kavanaugh.

Republican U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson praised the Kavanaugh pick and said he sees no issue with a vote happening before the mid-term elections this fall. Democrat Tammy Baldwin is more cautious.

Kavanaugh twice visited Marquette University while a federal judge, giving a lecture at Marquette Law School in 2015 and the next year discussing his work as an attorney and senior aide in President George W. Bush's administration.

Brett Kavanaugh

Brett Kavanaugh

On Tuesday, July 10, Kavanaugh went to Capitol Hill for what promises to be a tough confirmation battle. Speaking to Wisconsin reporters, Johnson praised him as a judge who will interpret the law.

"To me, that describes the thought process of someone who will be a judge -- not a super legislator, not an activist jurist," said Johnson.

Baldwin said in a statement Monday night that "the stakes are high" as she and other senators review the nomination.

"People need an independent justice who will not overturn the law of the land on women’s health, health care for people with pre-existing conditions, and the constitutional rights and freedoms of all Americans," Baldwin said.

Asked whether Baldwin would answer questions from reporters on Tuesday, an aide responded to FOX6 News by saying, "Unfortunately, Sen. Baldwin doesn't have time in her schedule today for an interview."

Johnson said he expects a vote before the November election, when Republicans will try to hold on to their narrow Senate majority.

Ron Johnson

"The Senate may change, but that's one of the reasons I think it is important that we should expeditiously handle this and vote before the election," said Johnson.

Pressure is ramping up on senators from both sides to support or oppose Kavanaugh, as neither party can afford to lose any votes.

"I appreciate the fact that Sen. Baldwin hasn't made a snap decision like so many of her colleagues have been and have just totally opposed it," said Johnson.

Johnson said he does not have an abortion litmus test for Kavanaugh, even though the senator said he would like to see the landmark ruling Roe v. Wade revisited.

Wisconsin Right to Life supports Kavanaugh, while Planned Parenthood opposes his confirmation.

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