Susan Collins slams anti-Kavanaugh activists for 'trying to buy votes'

Geneva Stokes
October 9, 2018

But constituents in ME have told a different story since Collins' speech last Friday, in which she suggested that Dr. Christine Blasey Ford incorrectly remembered Kavanaugh as the person who assaulted her when the two were in high school and claimed the judge had displayed an appropriate temperament for a Supreme Court justice.

On the subject of Kavanaugh, she told reporters the supplemental Federal Bureau of Investigation reports that she pushed for, along with GOP Sens. reported in 2015 that Rice has ties to Maine.

"I have met with so many Mainers that were sexual assault survivors", she told the TV station.

The Senate voted 50-48 to confirm Kavanaugh, following another political saga that gripped the nation.

In the end, Collins said she found Ford's allegation of sexual assault "sincere, painful and compelling" but said that absent any corroborating evidence she could not allow that to be the basis for voting against a nominee she thought was otherwise qualified.

Later on Sunday morning, she told ABC's Jonathan Karl, host of "This Week", that she had already decided on her no vote on Kavanaugh prior to his testimony. "They have been seared into my memory and have haunted me episodically as an adult", Ford said at a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing in September.

Collins visited her home state Sunday to speak at a bridge dedication ceremony honoring Somerset County Sheriff's Cpl.

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He's really smart with those kinds of things and they do a nice job putting him in some of those kinds of situations". So if that's something he decides to do, it's what he decides to do. "But we're going to keep pushing toward that".

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Although her decision was met with shouts of "no" and "shame, shame, shame" by protestors in the Senate gallery, in an interview with 60 Minutes' Scott Pelley, Collins said she is "very comfortable" with her decision.

Steve Nason, 44, said he had always questioned Ms. Collins' claims to be a moderate but that her speech impressed him with its thoroughness and thoughtfulness. Susan Collins, whose decision to support Brett Kavanaugh was key to his confirmation to the Supreme Court. "The last 20 so years I've been a home owner in the state of Maine, so it's not completely insane", she said.

We're already starting to get an idea of who might challenge Collins in 2020. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said Collins is a "top priority" when he was asked today if she could be targeted by Democrats in 2020.

Sweet said a big factor would be whether Collins, 65, decides to run at all.

The Maine Senator also said in a Friday speech that Kavanaugh places high importance on previous court decisions.

"It's too soon to say what I might do", Hannah Pingree told the AP.

"[Witnesses who were interviewed] all said they have no recollection". But the Christian Right didn't push for Kavanaugh's confirmation so aggressively because they think he shares the more libertarian views that retired Justice Anthony Kennedy had on abortion rights; Kavanaugh was nominated because he is an "originalist" or "strict constructionist" and a hardcore social conservative.

While her vote spurred criticism, Collins was cheered by Republicans including past and former presidents. She gave an impassioned, attractive speech yesterday.

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