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Trump calls Kavanaugh sexual assault claims a hoax

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U.S. Supreme Court Associate Justice Brett Kavanaugh and family participate in his ceremonial public swearing-in in Washington

US President Donald Trump has said the sex assault claims made against his new Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh were a "hoax" and "all made up".

A Supreme Court with a new conservative majority takes the bench as Brett Kavanaugh, narrowly confirmed after a bitter Senate battle, joins his new colleagues to hear his first arguments as a justice. The other eight justices were all in attendance.

Chief Justice John Roberts welcomed Kavanaugh on behalf of the entire court, wishing him the traditional "long and happy career in our common calling".

There were no disruptions in the courtroom, and the justices laughed at one another's jokes.

Mr Kavanaugh officially became a member of the high court Saturday.

"What we decide is whether the state - which has the burden of proving guilt beyond any reasonable doubt, the highest standard in our legal system - has met that burden of proof", Beskind said. This being argument, today's session is unlikely to produce any major news other than the novelty of it being Kavanaugh's first day on the job; his family will be on hand in the chamber to share the day with him. However, Justices Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan did not offer remarks during their respective swearing-in ceremonies, opting, instead, to speak at receptions with then-President Barack Obama regarding their appointments. Justice Sonia Sotomayor even appeared to playfully pinch Gorsuch's arm as she asked a question about the kind of physical force necessary to have a crime be treated as violent under a federal enhanced sentencing law. The cases concerned a Florida robbery conviction and burglary convictions in Tennessee and Arkansas.

Ultimately, Kavanaugh was confirmed by a vote of 50-48. Conservative Justice Neil Gorsuch joined the court past year.

The president said Kavanaugh overcame intense scrutiny by Democrats who considered him guilty and didn't want to give him due process. There will also be those looking for any lingering signs of Kavanaugh's heated, partisan confirmation fight. He had denied her allegation.

He later wrote in a newspaper opinion piece that he regretted some of his comments.

During the week of Kavanaugh's confirmation, the National Democratic Training Committee, which trains Democratic candidates, raised $240,000.

Justice Kavanaugh also faces more than a dozen judicial misconduct complaints over his public statements as a nominee to the Supreme Court.

The appeals had been brought by an environmental group and companies that supported the 2015 rule that had limited hydrofluorocarbons, which are used in a variety of products including spray cans and air conditioners.

Incoming Associate Justice Brett Kavanaugh attends a ceremonial swearing-in alongside President Trump at the White House.

But Mr Trump, who last week publicly mocked Ford, continued to stoke political divisions at Monday's ceremony, saying Justice Kavanaugh had been the victim of "a campaign of political and personal destruction based on lies and deception". One of the two cases involves the detention of immigrants, an issue on which Kavanaugh's vote could be key.

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