Bush called a number of senators in recent weeks, and had several conversations with Collins to reassure the key Republican vote about Kavanaugh's character and temperament, a person familiar with the matter tells CNN.
Kavanaugh's nomination sparked protest across the Capitol, which continued Saturday.
Murkowski said later she opposes Kavanaugh but will ask to be recorded as "present" during Saturday's confirmation vote to accommodate Republican Sen.
The Senate is expected to confirm Kavanaugh on Saturday.
There were a few supporters of President Trump and Judge Kavanaugh mixed in the crowd, but they were overwhelmingly outnumbered by "resistance" activists. But he added that based on the Federal Bureau of Investigation report, "I have found Judge Kavanaugh to be a qualified jurist who will follow the Constitution and determine cases based on the legal findings before him". "Juxtapose that with North Dakota, where the democratic incumbent senator is down 11 points, I think the state is pretty much in favor of President Trump's nominee", said Price.
Senate confirms Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court
In a twist, Murkowski said she will state her opposition but vote "present" as a courtesy to Kavanaugh supporter Sen. Murkowski broke with her party as the only one of four key swing votes to oppose advancing his nomination .
Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., responded to one protester's call for Kavanaugh to take a polygraph test, asking: "Maybe we can dunk him in water and see if he floats?" Susan Collins announced she's voting yes for the Supreme Court nominee.
They held signs reading "Kava Nope" and "Shame, Collins", the latter a reference to the announcement by Sen. The procedural vote on the Kavanaugh nomination is scheduled for Friday at 10:30 a.m. EDT.
Trump has been holding rallies across the country as he tries to boost Republican turnout in November's midterm elections, which will determine which party will control the House and Senate during the second half of Trump's term.
Collins' dramatic decision, laid out in a almost 45-minute speech on the Senate floor Friday, pushed Republicans over the edge and became a turning point for Kavanaugh. "I would say if we're talking about the Supreme Court and Judge Kavanaugh, I think he's highly qualified for the Supreme Court", Mrs. Trump said while speaking to reporters in Egypt during a solo global trip to Africa. Then she took her seat, looking down with a stone-faced expression.
Kavanaugh's opponents raised concerns that he'd push the court further right, including possible sympathetic rulings for Trump. "And my heart goes out to anyone who has experienced any type of sexual assault in their life".
Trump's Supreme Court pick Brett Kavanaugh sworn in after divisive fight
With tensions simmering, Pence got an earful from activists who booed and chanted "Vote them out!" as he walked to his motorcade. Supreme Court judges are appointed for life and the 53-year-old Kavanaugh can potentially keep his position for decades.
The Senate voted to pass its motion to cloture on Friday morning, with a vote tally of 51-49, featuring overwhelming Republican support. Steve Daines of Montana, who supports Kavanaugh but was in Montana to walk his daughter down the aisle at her wedding. That balanced out the absence without affecting the outcome, and gave Kavanaugh the same two-vote margin he'd have received had both lawmakers voted.
Yet Kavanaugh's pathway to confirmation seemed unfettered until Ford accused him of drunkenly sexually assaulting her in a locked bedroom at a 1982 high school gathering.
Kerry Berchem, another Yale alum who knew both Kavanaugh and Ramirez, also claims to be in possession of texts that show the judge was preparing a defense against Ramirez's claims with friends before they were printed in the New Yorker on September 23. Citing the Democrats on the Judiciary Committee and "the virtual mob that assaulted us in the course of this process", McConnell said "they've managed to deliver the only thing that we had not been able to figure out how to do, which was to get our folks fired up".
"What left wing groups and their Democratic allies have done to Judge Kavanaugh is nothing short of monstrous", Republican Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley of Iowa declared before the vote.
Democrats furiously accused the GOP of short-circuiting efforts to examine Ford's allegations and of rushing the nomination through while ignoring the changed political dynamics surrounding complaints of misconduct against powerful men ushered in by the #MeToo movement.
Lewis Hamilton leads the way in first practice at Japanese Grand Prix
The 5.8-km Suzuka circuit's unique figure-of-eight layout with its fast, undulating sweeps is a firm favourite with the drivers. It was a supreme day in the vehicle for Hamilton, who led team-mate Valtteri Bottas by four tenths in both sessions.