Amy Schumer and Emily Ratajkowski were among the 300 people arrested in Washington on Thursday night as they protested Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh.
The Senate is poised to take a crucial vote Friday on whether to advance Mr Kavanaugh’s nomination to the Supreme Court as key Republican senators remain undecided amid allegations of sexual misconduct and intense protests that have divided the nation.
Schumer, a comedian and a distant relative of Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, raised her fist in defiance to photographers as she was led away from by police.
Ratajkowski, a model and actor, tweeted that she had also been arrested outside the Supreme Court.
US Capitol Police said 302 people were arrested Thursday for illegally protesting inside Senate office buildings.
The protesters had originally planned to protest on the Capitol steps. But after police blockaded the steps, they headed to the atrium of the Hart Senate Office Building.
The vast majority of the arrests – 293 – took place on the Hart atrium floor. Another nine people were arrested for another demonstration on the fourth floor of the adjacent Dirksen Senate Office Building.
During the protests, at a signal from organisers, the group began holding up signs and chanting.
Others who were watching on upper floors unfurled banners that said “we believe Christine Ford,” referring to the Dr Christine Blasey Ford, the woman who claimed Mr Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her at a high-school party in 1982. Mr Kavanaugh denies the claim.
Tensions have been high at the Capitol with opponents of Mr Kavanaugh, including survivors of sexual assault, confronting senators in the halls and holding vigil across the street at the Supreme Court.
Supporters of Mr Kavanaugh, Donald Trump’s first choice to sit on the Supreme Court, also turned out.
Mr Trump, the US president, said the protesters’ “rage-fueled resistance is starting to backfire at a level nobody has ever seen before.”
Friday’s vote is a procedural one to end the debate, and some fence-sitting senators could conceivably vote to advance Mr Kavanaugh’s nomination but still hold out their support ahead of a final confirmation roll call over the weekend.
The vote follows the conclusion of a week-long FBI investigation into the claims made by Dr Blasey Ford.
Photo Credit: Extra