The US Senate has confirmed Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court in a victory for President Donald Trump a week before the presidential election.
Mr Trump’s fellow Republicans voted 52-48 to approve the judge, overcoming the unified opposition of Democrats.
Her appointment seals for the foreseeable future a 6-3 conservative majority on the top US judicial body.
Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden called the move rushed and unprecedented.
Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer said that by going ahead with the vote so close to the election the Republican majority was “lighting its credibility on fire”.
Democrats fear Judge Barrett’s confirmation to the lifelong post will favour Republicans in politically sensitive cases that reach America’s top court for potentially decades to come.
Justice Barrett, 48, took the oath of office at the White House alongside President Trump.
Only one Republican, Senator Susan Collins, who faces a tough re-election battle in Maine, voted against the president’s nominee in Monday evening’s vote.
The new justice is the third appointed by the Republican president, after Neil Gorsuch in 2017 and Brett Kavanaugh in 2018.
The federal appeals court judge from Indiana fills the vacancy left by Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, a liberal icon who died last month